French President Emmanuel Macron defeated his far-right rival Marine Le Pen on Sunday by a comfortable margin, securing a second term and heading off what would have been a political earthquake.
Cheers of joy erupted as the results appeared on a giant screen at the Champ de Mars park at the foot of the Eiffel tower, where Macron supporters waved French and EU flags. People hugged each other and chanted “Macron”.
“I will never abandon the French,” she said to supporters chanting “Marine! Marine!”
The first pollsters’ projections showed Macron securing around 57-58 per cent of the vote.
Such estimates are normally accurate but may be fine-tuned as official results come in from around the country throughout the evening.
But Macron can expect little to no grace period after many, especially on the left only voted for him reluctantly to block the far-right from winning.