French far right has big lead over Macron ally ahead of EU vote


France’s far-right National Rally (RN) party holds a commanding lead in voting intentions for upcoming European Parliament elections, according to an opinion poll published on Sunday.

Voting intentions remained “very volatile,” however, said the Elabe institute, which conducted the polls for broadcaster BFMTV and weekly La Tribune Dimanche.

“One in three voters could still change their minds before the election, especially on the left.”

The poll was conducted among 1,803 people between May 29 and 31.

The extreme-right RN’s top candidate, Jordan Bardella, is credited with 32.5 percent of voting intentions in the poll.

Valerie Hayer, an ally of center-right President Emmanuel Macron, came second with 16 percent, followed by center-left Socialist candidate Raphael Glucksmann with 13.

While the standing of the main candidates was broadly unchanged from a similar poll a week ago, left-wing parties France Unbowed, the Greens and Communists made slight gains.

The right-wing opposition Les Republicains and the extreme-right Reconquete were, meanwhile, below the 5 percent threshold needed for representation in the European Parliament.

In France, the European Parliament elections are primarily seen as a key gauge of national politicians’ popularity.

Bardella was later yesterday to hold a final election rally in Paris.

Around 5,500 supporters and RN party heavyweight Marine Le Pen were expected to attend.

Opinion polls show far-right parties making gains in several European Union countries in the elections on June 6-9.__Daily Hurriyet