Far-right leader Marine Le Pen comes out strong with the lead in the first round of the French presidential elections based on a new poll, and in the process raising hopes that she is well on the way to pulling off what Trump has accomplished in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
The Front National Leader had between 25 and 26% support compared with Francois Fillion who received between 23 and 25% based on the Ipsos Sopra Steria poll for the French newspaper Le Monde and the Cevipof research centre.
Mainstream media have been claiming that Fillion is still the candidate to beat and that they are expecting him to still beat the far-right leader in a second round runoff in May. But the former Republican Prime Minister has actually lost up to four points in the first polls of the year, and there has been a significant wavering of public support for the more established candidate.
The preferred narrative of the mainstream French media in undermining Le Pen's strength is similar to the way the established American media pushed for the so-called winnability, even invincibility, of Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. Of course, we know what happened next. Tonight, Donald Trump will be inaugurated as the 45th President of the United States.
Le Pen and Trump are also ideologically compatible, with Le Pen saying that Trump is, in fact, in the process of implementing her strategy of "economic patriotism" and "intelligent protectionism". Le Pen also expressed her admiration with how with just one tweet, Trump was able to prevent a car company from moving their production plant from the U.S., and in effect accomplishing more changes in the U.S. than Mr. Sarkozy and Mr. Hollande ever managed in a decade of presidency.
Le Pen also boldly claimed in November last year that her triumph in the French election would serve as the logical next step in the political wave sweeping the globe, declaring that her victory would be the crucial "third act" of a global revolution started by Brexit and the amazing upset victory of Trump in the U.S., two events that shook the world.
The French presidential candidate said that Trump's win gave a lot of hope, especially since he is already putting in place measures she has been demanding for years. Le Pen vows that right after winning the election, she would push for a French referendum in six months for their own French exit from the European Union. Le Pen has been an ardent critic of the EU for a long time and passionately calls for the French people to regain their territorial sovereignty by letting the French government control their own borders, and not surrender said right to EU.
Le Pen doing a Trump in terms of pulling off an election upset could be the modern day version of a French revolution.