Emmanuel Macron: Polls show Marine Le Pen's popularity rising
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Ahead of the election next year, the Government has announced a decision to create an advanced polling system which would see ballots taken a week before the election. Amid the threats of fraud, French officials have criticised the decision from the government. Outspoken Frexit campaigner Charles-Henri Gallois instantly hit out at the decision, labelling it as “madness”.
He said: “The government wants to introduce an advance poll for the Presidential election in 2022.
“Vote Ballot box with ballot will be done on voting machines during the week before the ballot.
“A new madness of the government which can only cast suspicion on our electoral system!”
Florian Philippot, president of the Patriot party also criticised the decision which sparked concern it could increase voter fraud.
Although Mr Macron is regarded as the frontrunner in next year’s election, his hopes for re-election may take a severe blow if he cannot kickstart France’s recovery from the pandemic.
In particular, like many EU nations, the French President has failed to create an adequate vaccination programme.
While the UK has forged ahead with its own vaccination policy, France has lagged behind and according to Our World in Data, has only vaccinated 4.44 people per 100 in comparison to the UK’s 23.33 as of February 14.
In a further blow to Mr Macron’s coronavirus campaign, French pharmaceutical company Sanofi announced it will not be able to produce a vaccine this year.
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Last month the French government had also been informed that its renowned Pasteur Institute, had now abandoned hope of creating an effective jab.
The institute was forced to abandon its research after clinical trial from phase 1 came back with poor results.
Francois Ruffin from the left-wing France Unbowed party said in response: “I want a French vaccine, with French technology.
“Why haven’t we got one?
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“We need to explain it to the French people.”
Although much of the tensions has now simmered, Mr Macron had his presidency rocked following the controversial security bill.
The legislation would have stopped the sharing of pictures of police officers with the intent to harm.
Following the bill, there were weeks of protests in December before the parliament announced it would remove certain controversial elements of the legislation.
Before that announcement, many groups claimed the bill would have hindered press freedom and help cover up police activity.
Joining protestors last December were also members of the Gilet Jaunes movement who sparked unrest over a rise in taxation.
The protests across France lasted for a year before subsiding as they brought the country to a standstill.
To stop the protests, Mr Macron was forced to row back on fuel tax rises and offer additional measures including a cut to pension tax and a rise in the minimum wage.
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