President Trump extended his congratulations to centrist Emmanuel Macron, who defeated far-right candidate Marine Le Pen in Sunday’s French presidential election.
Congratulations to Emmanuel Macron on his big win today as the next President of France. I look very much forward to working with him!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 7, 2017
The White House released a separate statement congratulating Macron as well.
“We congratulate President-elect Macron and the people of France on their successful presidential election,” the statement said. “We look forward to working with the new President and continuing our close cooperation with the French government.”
Though Trump did not officially endorse any candidate in the first or second rounds of the French election, he shared a number of similarities with Le Pen.
Both rode a wave of populist, anti-establishment anger, supported Brexit, and called for their countries to adopt a more protectionist stance on the world stage and reject globalization. During the 2016 US presidential election, Le Pen strongly endorsed Trump’s candidacy and believed his win was a boon for the far-right National Front party in France.
Macron, on the other hand, is a centrist with a finance background whose party, En Marche!, was established just a year ago. He has advocated for deregulation of the economy and for France to maintain a strong presence in the European Union.
His decisive win on Sunday demonstrated the French electorate’s rejection of the country’s left and right establishment parties, as well as the extreme right represented by the National Front.
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