Macron dissolves French parliament, calls snap elections after far-right wins EU vote

French far-right parties win 40% of the European parliament vote, beating president’s centrist alliance

French President Emmanuel Macron speaks at a news conference at the German government guest house in Meseberg, north of Berlin, Germany, May 28, 2024. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)
French President Emmanuel Macron speaks at a news conference at the German government guest house in Meseberg, north of Berlin, Germany, May 28, 2024. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)

PARIS, France — French President Emmanuel Macron announced Sunday he was dissolving parliament and calling snap legislative elections after the far-right trounced his centrist alliance in EU polls.

The first round of elections for the lower house National Assembly will take place on June 30, with the second round on July 7, Macron announced in an address to the nation.

The outcome of the EU elections, he acknowledged, is “not a good result for parties who defend Europe.” Macron noted that, including the top-scoring National Rally (RN), far-right parties in France managed to take almost 40 percent of the vote in the EU elections in France.

“Far-right parties… are progressing everywhere in the continent. It is a situation to which I cannot resign myself,” he said.

“I decided to give you the choice… Therefore I will dissolve the National Assembly tonight.

“This decision is serious and heavy but it is an act of confidence. Confidence in you, dear compatriots, and in the capacity of the French people to make the best choice for itself and future generations.”

French far-right leader Marine Le Pen delivers a speech as Jordan Bardella, president of the French far-right National Rally, listens at the party election night headquarters, June 9, 2024 in Paris. (AP Photo/Lewis Joly)

The RN’s list, led by Jordan Bardella, 28, gained between 32.3 and 33 percent of the vote compared with 14.8 to 15.2 percent for Macron’s alliance led by his Renaissance party, according to projections from several polling firms.

Macron warned Thursday that the EU risked being “blocked” by a big far-right presence in the European Parliament after this week’s elections.

The election results also mark a critical moment as eyes turn to France’s 2027 presidential vote where Macron cannot stand again and RN figurehead Marine Le Pen fancies she has her best-ever chance of winning the Elysee Palace.

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