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President Macron
French President Emmanuel Macron has scored another political victory, this time with his party 'Republic on the Move' (LREM), which is projected to win a majority of seats in the second round of France's parliamentary elections, according to polls.

Republic on the Move (La République En Marche!, or LREM, formerly En Marche!), formed by the 39-year-old former banker a year ago, is bound for between 355 and 425 seats out of 577, exit polls show, one of the highest majorities since Charles de Gaulle in 1968, giving him a strong mandate to start implementing his policies.


The right-wing Republicans and their allies emerged in the exit polls as the largest opposition party, with 125 seats. The National Front, led by anti-immigration, Eurosceptic candidate Marine Le Pen, who ran against Macron in the presidential race and won 33.9 percent of the vote, was estimated to have won a mere eight seats. Le Pen did have one minor victory, however: For the first time, she personally won a seat in the lower house of parliament.

Turnout, however, was low, estimated at 42 percent by French pollster Elabe, while Ipsos/Sopra Steria placed it at around 43 percent. This was a lower turnout than the first round of voting on June 11, in which 48.7 percent of the electorate came out to vote. The Interior Ministry reported at 15:00 local time that the turnout was the lowest since 1997, and official data showed only 35.33 percent of the electorate turned up to cast their ballot by 17:00.

Taking over from the Socialist government of Francois Hollande, Macron aims to make sweeping reforms to the French economy, including cutting tens of thousands of public-sector jobs, making it easier to hire and fire workers, and investing billions of euros into fields such as job training and renewable energy.