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Despite Defeat Le Pen Proves She Can 'Win New Supporters'

© REUTERS / Pascal Rossignol / Marine Le Pen, French National Front (FN) political party leader and candidate for French 2017 presidential election, attends a campaign rally in Paris, France, April 17, 2017.
Marine Le Pen, French National Front (FN) political party leader and candidate for French 2017 presidential election, attends a campaign rally in Paris, France, April 17, 2017. - Sputnik International
The French presidential election held on Sunday resulted in a victory by Emmanuel Macron, the leader of the "En Marche!" movement. The independent candidate enjoyed wide public support and received 66.1 percent of the votes, while his rival far-right National Front leader Marine Le Pen gained 33.9 percent.

Emmanuel Macron, French presidential candidate and leader of the movement En Marche!, during a news conference following the first round of the election. - Sputnik International
Macron Says Necessary to Debate With National Front Party to 'Denounce Lies'
Nevertheless, the fact that Le Pen received 10.6 million votes makes the results of the election historic for the National Front. According to the party's treasurer, Wallerand de Saint-Just, despite the defeat, the party’s performance was quite promising.

"We ended this long and turbulent campaign with a feeling that our job was well done. We have succeeded because nearly 11 million people voted for Le Pen. She didn’t win because there is always only one winner," Saint-Just told Sputnik France.

He noted that Le Pen’s campaign was a success because "99.99 percent of the media coverage was in support of Emmanuel Macron."

The suggestion was echoed by Gaëtan Dussausaye, who is in charge of the youth wing of the National Front.

"I’m very proud because in the run-off we made significant progress. A historic number or patriots supported us. Le Pen proved that she can win new supporters, even more than she had in the first round," Dussausaye said.

People walk past campaign posters of Emmanuel Macron (L), head of the political movement En Marche! (Onwards!), and Marine Le Pen (R), French National Front (FN) political party leader, two of the eleven candidates who run in the 2017 French presidential election, are seen in Paris, France, April 10, 2017 - Sputnik International
Macron Overcomes Weak Support to Win French Election by Not Being Le Pen
He pointed out that the National Front would soon undergo a "real transformation," including in a bid to attract new supporters.

"This unprecedented election showed that the political forces are currently being rebalanced, especially between the left and the right. The division between these two forces is already in history, while the rift between patriots and globalists is widening," Dussausaye said.

Another reason behind the historic result of the National Front is that the movement was supported by former presidential candidate "France Arise" (Debout la France) party leader Nicolas Dupont-Aignan. This move has put an end to the long-standing marginalization of the National Front.

"Rapprochement with Dupont-Aignan was one of the most important events of the campaign. He’s a disciple of Gaullism and the fact that he endorsed the National Front is very important, because for decades our party could not work with Gaullists due to a number of reasons. But now it’s over," Saint-Just pointed out.

Commenting on the legislative election scheduled for June 11, Dussausaye expressed hope that the National Front will repeat its successful performance.

"We hope that it’s just the beginning and that we would attract more patriot lawmakers to the National Assembly, as an opposition to Macron and his supporters," he said.

French far-right Front National leader Marine Le Pen and her father Jean-Marie Le Pen in Lyon, central France. - Sputnik International
Jean-Marie Le Pen Explains Daughter's Presidential Defeat by Focus on EU
"The first round of the election showed that Le Pen took the lead in the majority of the departments. There are some 150 districts, which account for 40-50 percent of the votes for the National Front. Taking into account the nuances of the legislative election, we’re likely to set face against one or two other candidates. This may help us win," Dussausaye said.

Commenting on the possibility of an alliance with the Republicans party, he noted that the National Front is ready to "give a hand to all real patriots" but there are serious differences between the two organizations.

"Now it is clear that an alliance is impossible with a party where there are such politicians like Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet and Bruno Le Maire. They will do anything to join Macron’s cabinet," he concluded.

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