Written by 00:17 World

New Popular Front Scored Big in France’s Vote. Who Are Its Members?

The night President Emmanuel Macron announced a snap election for France’s National Assembly last month, two words began to buzz around the internet and the media: Popular Front.

It was a reference to the left-wing alliance formed in the 1930s to resist rising fascism in Europe and at home. Now, a group of France’s main left-wing parties have banded together to fight what they see as a new danger: Marine Le Pen’s far-right National Rally party, which is closer to taking power than ever before.

That left-wing alliance called itself the New Popular Front.

“For the first time since the Vichy regime, the extreme right could prevail again in France,” the Socialist leader Olivier Faure recently told a large crowd, referencing the French government during World War II that collaborated with the Nazi occupiers.

Mr. Macron decided to force the election for the National Assembly, the lower house of Parliament, because of an embarrassing defeat last month to Ms. Le Pen’s party in a European parliamentary election.

The left-wing group of parties, which had only broken up months before over personal and policy disagreements, responded by reuniting. Despite its rushed beginnings, the New Popular Front came in second in the first round of voting. The front was just five percentage points behind the National Rally and its allies, while Mr. Macron’s centrist Renaissance party and its allies came a distant third.

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Last modified: 7 July 2024
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