It`s time for the final round of the presidential battle in France, and Wednesday 20th will be critical for both, Macron and Le Pen. Those who win the war on words on Wednesday can end up as the next president in France.
But many people in France don`t know what to vote for this time. Le Pen is a far-right politician, and she and her party are in a good position to win this time. Opinion polls show that 47% of French voters want Le Pen to win.
Marine Le Pen sent shockwaves through Europe with her latest comments on NATO.
Le Pen said in a press conference that France will leave NATO if she wins the presidency. In 2019, Macron warned Europe and said; NATO is becoming brain-dead. He also said that Europe can no longer rely on America to defend NATO allies.
Macron said on October 21, 2019, that it is high time for Europe to «wake up».
Le Pen also suggested a strategic reconciliation between NATO and Russia once the war is over. On top of that, she wants to reform the EU from the inside. This is why Europe and NATO are so nervous over the French election on Sunday.
Le Pen believes that France can be useful in the resolution of the world`s great disorders, if and only if it is independent. What protesters don`t like is that Le Pen will start an alliance with Putin if she wins the election.
This election is crucial not just for France, but for the whole of Europe, and this is why investors should care. Le Pen is opposed to globalization, and she believes that it is a threat to French society. She proposed the replacement of the world trade organization. And the abolition of the IMF.
Le Pen is also against immigration and considers it a tool of Islamic extremism. Her party is best known for immigration issues, but less known for its economic policies. But she has changed since 2017, and she`s more focused on people`s cost of living.
She wants to eliminate VAT on a basket of foods while cutting the rate from 20 to 5 percent on electricity and petrol. She is more protectionist, and nationalist than Macron who is considered to be a man with a business-friendly agenda.
«Give the French their money back», is Le Pen`s slogan, and she has proposed big tax cuts and new spending. Income tax would be scrapped for everyone under 30, and interest-free loans of up to €100,000 would be offered to younger families, with the debt forgiven if they had three children.
This is good news for yellow vest protesters that started the «Gilets Jaunes» movement in France in 2018, originally a protest against a tax rise on petrol and diesel.
A French sovereign wealth fund would be created to promote an economy focused on what she calls «localism» as opposed to Macron`s «globalism».
People in France believe that Macron is a «president of the rich», and younger voters are angry mostly because of the nationwide cost of living crisis. Younger voters are also angry because of the lost years of their life due to the Covid pandemic and government lockdowns. This has also made an anti-establishment group against the French government.
Marine Le Pen knows this, and that`s why she is focusing on younger voters. The inflation in the eurozone is at its highest ever, and purchasing power and the cost of living is the single most important issue for 58% of voters and a clear majority within every age group except for those 18 to 24, for whom the environment ranks first.
Marine Le Pen is anti-NATO and anti-EU, friendly with Russia`s Vladimir Putin, and she doesn`t want a Frexit, and that has come under scrutiny.
Last Sunday was a good day for Mèlenchon, who finished close behind Le Pen. Polls suggest 30% of Mèlenchon voters might vote for Macron, and 23% for Le Pen. The rest is expected to abstain or vote blank next Sunday.
Macron made history in 2017 when he became the youngest president in France at the age of 39. He promotes democracy and liberalism, and he`s a globalist. He is a favorite to win the election, and 53% want him to be re-elected.
But, it can also be a close race, while 40% of the French voters are still undecided, so the outcome is uncertain. If Macron wins again, it would be a symbolic moment as he will be the first president for 20 years to win a second term.
Four years ago, the man behind Brexit, Nigel Farage, predicted that Marine Le Pen will win the French presidential election in 2022. Time will show.