Macron's Party Wins Big

Macron's Party Wins Big

French voters are choosing lawmakers in the lower house of parliament in a vote that is crucial for newly-elected president Emmanuel Macron.

Her defeat in May brought huge relief to European allies who had feared another populist upheaval to follow Britain's Brexit vote and Donald Trump's election as USA president, and disappointment to the party faithful.

French President Emmanuel Macron's rivals on Monday warned against handing him an overwhelming majority that would stifle debate after his party cruised to victory in the opening round of elections to the National Assembly.

"While the political situation in the United Kingdom has become more complicated, across the Channel, conventional wisdom appears to have been turned on its head as Macron's new party.has swept the board in the first round of French parliamentary elections, no mean feat for a movement that didn't even exist two years ago", said CMC Markets (LSE: CMCX.L - news) chief market analyst Michael Hewson.

Socialist Party leader Jean Christophe Cambadelis said the record-low turnout was a "sign of vast democratic fatigue".

By late afternoon, just 41 percent of registered voters on the French mainland had cast ballots. Now it is set to dominate legislation and win a vast injection of subsidies.

At Wednesday's Cabinet meeting, he is to introduce plans to clean up politics, to staunch the steady flow of scandals that have over decades reduced voter trust in the French political class.

If no candidate wins more than 50 percent in the first round, all candidates who secure at least 12.5 percent will go into the second-round runoff on June 18.

Macron's La Republique en Marche party members reacts after the announcement of the first partial official results and polling agencies projections are announced, in Paris, Sunday, June 11, 2017. The main opposition in the face of The Republicans party and its allies can get 95-115 seats. Its number of seats will drop from almost 300 to around 30. Former President Francois Hollande's Socialist Party had 280 seats.

What editorial writers proclaimed as a "spectacular" sweep by the REM left the Republicans - who had hoped to rebound from their humiliation in the presidential vote - trailing in second with a predicted 70-130 seats.

The National Front of far-right leader Marine Le Pen looked unlikely to convert her strong showing in the presidential election into a large number of legislative seats.

The FN's result showed the party struggling to rebound from Le Pen's bruising defeat by Macron in May's presidential run-off. Le Pen complained that the legislative voting system didn't fully represent voters' wishes - because her party got around 14 percent of votes but wasn't able to greatly improve on the two legislators it had in the last legislature.

The scale of the potential landslide demonstrates the extent to which Macron, a newcomer to party politics, has managed to transform the French political landscape in record time.

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