French President Emmanuel Macron won a second term in office in Sunday’s runoff election.
Macron is projected to have defeated challenger Marine Le Pen with over 58 percent of the vote.
In the first round of voting, which took place two weeks ago, Macron finished with 27.85 percent of the vote, and Le Pen with 23.15 percent.
The right-wing populist conceded shortly after the projected win was announced for Macron, but she did so with harsh words for the president.
“Tonight’s result is in itself an earth-shattering victory (for us),” Le Pen told supporters. “I fear that the five-year term that is about to begin will not break with the brutal methods of the previous one.”
“In order to avoid the monopolization of power by a few, more than ever I will pursue my commitment to France and the French people with the energy, perseverance and affection that you know me for,” Le Pen added.
“The game is not completely over,” she told supporters.
Macron’s supporters rallied and celebrated at the Eiffel Tower in Paris. Cheers erupted when he was projected to be the winner.
During his victory speech, Macron said that he will be a “president for all of us” in France, acknowledging that many of his votes were not really for him, but against Le Pen.
“Many of our compatriots voted for me not out of support for my ideas but to block those of the extreme right,” Macron said. “I want to thank them and I know that I have a duty towards them in the years to come.”
The Macron-Le Pen face off was a repeat of 2017, but Le Pen brought a far greater challenge, and closer race, this time around. With low approval ratings, especially due to the COVID-19 pandemic, inflation, immigration, and the Russia/Ukraine conflict — it appeared plausible that Macron might have lost.
Macron’s win appeared to give hope to those supporting Biden in the US, where the president is also facing staggeringly low approval ratings.
“An interesting observation, just FYI,” tweeted White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain. “President Macron appears to have secured a double-digit victory over LePen, at a time when his approval rating is 36%. Hmmm….”
An interesting observation, just FYI.
President Macron appears to have secured a double-digit victory over LePen, at a time when his approval rating is 36%. Hmmm….https://t.co/N50u8He5gW
— Ronald Klain (@WHCOS) April 24, 2022
In the 2017 race, Macron won handedly with 66 percent of the vote.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson tweeted in both English and French, “Congratulations to @EmmanuelMacron on your re-election as President of France.”
Félicitations à @EmmanuelMacron pour votre réélection à la Présidence de la République Française. La France est l’un de nos alliés les plus proches et les plus importants. Je suis heureux de continuer à travailler ensemble sur les sujets-clés pour nos deux pays et pour le monde.
— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) April 24, 2022
“France is one of our closest and most important allies. I look forward to continuing to work together on the issues which matter most to our two countries and to the world,” Johnson continued.