A computer error might cost Marine Le Pen the French general election as 500,000 citizens living outside of France have the chance to vote twice.
There are astounding reports indicating that half a million people managed to receive duplicate polling cards. The duplicates would allow them to cast two votes in the first round of the election which will be held on the 23rd of April.
The incident will not be investigated by French authorities until the election is over. The authorities confirmed that they would not be investigating the potential electoral fraud so as to allow retrospective prosecution.
The decision by French authorities is likely to crush Ms. Le Pen’s dreams of rising to power, as most French nationals living outside of their country are not right-wing. This was demonstrated by the fact many feel they depend on the European Union to guarantee their stay in foreign countries.
Back in February, Emmanuel Macron made a visit to London where he held rousing talks urging London’s 300,000-strong community to vote for him. The French population in London equates to France’s sixth largest city. Add to that the fact that many of those 300,000 people will have the chance to vote for Mr. Macron twice.
Jean-Luc Melenchon, who is a far-left candidate that has surged in the polls recently and threatens to break into the leadership race against Ms. Le Pen and Mr. Macron is also likely to benefit from this catastrophic error.
She made a statement saying that this was the first year that she has considered voting twice, adding that she has asked herself whether she should take advantage of the anomaly by voting twice. She also pointed out that her candidate was low enough in the polls.
It’s common knowledge that voting twice is a crime. However, police will only find out if they run a check on the individual through their computer systems. One can be sentenced up to two years in prison and a fine of about £13,500.
A statement released by France’s Interior Ministry indicated that it will not be invalidating the election because of the duplicate voting glitch. However, the latest poll by Bloomberg’s shows that Mr. Macron and Ms. Le Pen are polling at 22.8 percent, and far left Mr. Melenchon at 18.3 per cent. Therefore, there’s a possibility that an extra 500,000 votes either way could have a tremendous effect.