Vive La France!!!

Tonight I am pleased … almost giddy, as it were!  The French exhibited great common sense and showed Ms. Marine LePen the door, electing Emmanuel Macron by a decisive margin … 66% to 34%, according to the Guardian.  This despite Putin’s efforts to rig the election in favour of LePen, as he did for Trump in the U.S. election last year.

French elections-2Macron’s victory speech was somber and gracious.  He said he accepted that many had voted for him even though they disagreed with his programme to “defend the republic against extremism”. When he mentioned those who had voted for Marine Le Pen, there were boos and whistles from the crowd. “No, don’t whistle them. They have expressed today their anger and dismay – and sometimes convictions. I respect that. But I will do everything I can in the next five years so there is no reason to vote for extremes. Tonight, there is only the reunited people of France. The world is watching us. Europe and the world. I will serve you with love.”

macron-3The man has class.  Mssr. Macron understands the divide the populist movement has wrought upon his nation and I believe he plans to do everything in his power to help heal that divide.  He said he was speaking to all of France’s citizens, not just those who had voted for him. His primary task over the coming five years, he added, was to “calm people’s fears, restore France’s confidence, and gather all its people together to face the immense challenges that face us”.

Unfortunately, on the other side of the channel, they were not so gracious about Macron’s win.  Had LePen won, it was likely that she would have advocated for France leaving the European Union, a Frexit, if you will.  Britain’s own Nigel Farage had set up a group to advocate for just such an eventuality, and that group was more than a little put out, apparently, by the results of yesterday’s election.  A tweet from the group read that that the French people had once again “rolled over” just as they had done in 1940 – except this time they saved Germany “the bullets and the fuel”.  Farage himself got in on the act, tweeting: “A giant deceit has been voted for today. Macron will be Juncker’s puppet.” 

Hillary Clinton, having herself been the victim of Putin’s election interference, tweeted this:

“Victory for Macron, for France, the EU, & the world. Defeat to those interfering w/democracy. (But the media says I can’t talk about that) 4:32 PM – 7 May 2017”

Donald Trump, who had supported LePen, saying she was “strongest on borders, and she’s the strongest on what’s been going on in France”, congratulated Macron and said he looks forward to working with him.  Theresa May of the UK said, “we look forward to working with the new president on a wide range of shared priorities”.  The aforementioned Nigel Farage tweeted, “@EmmanuelMacron offers 5 more years of failure, power to the EU and open borders. If @MLP_officiel sticks in there, she can win in 2022.”

Reactions from other world leaders:

  • “Your victory is a victory for a strong united Europe and for the Franco-German friendship.” – Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany

  • Jean-Claude Juncker, the President of the European Commission, said the result made him “… happy that the ideas that you defended of a strong and progressive Europe that protects all its citizens will be those that France will cherish under your presidency”.

  • Guy Verhofstadt, the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, said: “We supported him from the very start. I am relieved by his defeat of demagoguery and populism. I am also proud of his commitment to a social, liberal European project.”

  • “The citizens of France entrusted you to lead the country in a difficult period for Europe and for the entire world community. The growing threat of terrorism and violent extremism is accompanied by an escalation of local conflicts and the destabilisation of entire regions. In these condition it is especially important to overcome mutual distrust and join forces to ensure international stability and security.” – Vladimir Putin, Russian President

Predictably, there were the naysayers, primarily in the ranks of LePen’s supporters, some responding with vitriol, mocking Macron’s wife, his platform, and whatever else they could think of, but that, I am coming to realize, is the mentality of the masses and exists in every venue.  Overall, I think the western world had been holding its collective breath, and yesterday breathed a sigh of profound relief.  I know I did.  Vive la France!

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30 thoughts on “Vive La France!!!

  1. Yes, well the odious Farage has a track record of speaking much about democracy, until the voters are mean to him and don’t vote his way, an’ ‘den he froes his widdle toys out of da pwam!’
    And he and his can take their 1940 comments and apply them as other people would apply suppositories as they obviously know ‘Sweet Fanny Adams’ about that era.
    After I hear him making sounds with his vocal chords I always have the urge to check the underside of my footwear in case I’ve picked up ‘something’
    (Just as well I was in a good and charitable mood when I typed this!!)

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I think there was an expectation of the Brexiteers to support MLP. Contrary to popular belief we are not all xenophobic racists and as we didn’t vote in the far right in the UK we did not wish to see the far right gain a real foothold in France. I hope Macron can unite his people and move forward to solving the problems of why so many did vote for MLP. After the recent terrorist attacks France still has some healing to do. I hope they succeed.
    xxx Cwtch Mawr xxx

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yes, I know, dear David. Most of those who read my blog and who’s blogs I read are of a more moderate stance. Macron is young and lacks experience, but I do keep my fingers crossed that he will step up to the plate quickly and lead France in the direction of reason, calmoness, and away from the far-r9ght movements. Sigh. So much to ponder and worry over these days. Cwtch Mawr, my dear friend!

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Dear Jill,
    I love the way President Macron is cutting off the legs of Marine Le Pens by welcoming her followers into the fold and by letting those disenfranchised and unemployed workers know that he hears them and plans to do whatever he can to make life better for them.
    He is uniting the French peoples and let’s pray that he can deliver the goods.
    Hugs, Gronda

    Liked by 4 people

    • So do I. I believe that he is the best hope for bringing the French people together again, though I suspect it will be a long process. He is young and needs to gain experience, which may prove to take time and have its setbacks, but hopefully he will prevail.

      Hugs!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Happy and relieved, yes. Giddy … I am afraid not. I have talked to some of my French friends, and everyone says “thank god Macron has won, but the fact remains that rouhgly 10 million French people have voted for Le Pen”. The new president is facing a very difficult task, trying to unite the French people. Also, the next election in France is just around the corner: in June a new French parliament will be elected, and who knows how the Front Nationale will score there … So, yes, it is a step in the right direction, a very necessary one, but more steps are needed.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yes, you are right, of course … this is only the first step of many. Macron is young and inexperienced, and likely to stumble more than a few ties, but I am encouraged because I think his intentions are good and his heart is in the right place. Fingers crossed!

      Like

    • Yes, let us definitely hope for a good outcome in Germany in September. I was pleased, especially, that Putin’s efforts did not work in France as they did here. That man needs to go!

      Like

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