Presidential – Marine Le Pen, Emmanuel Macron or a blank vote? Like many voters from abroad or the French living abroad before them, urban citizens over the age of 18, registered on electoral rolls, have been called to the polls, since 8 a.m. on Sunday, April 24, to choose between presidential elections. Finalists, outgoing Emmanuel Macron and candidate Marine Le Pen. They have until 7 p.m. or 8 p.m., depending on the city to enter ballots at the ballot box, or 6 p.m. in some small towns depending on a decision made by the county.
Voting began on Saturday in the French West Indies, Guyana, Saint-Pierre and Miquelon (the French archipelago in North America) and French Polynesia (the South Pacific). On Sundays, polling stations in mainland France are open until 7 pm, or until 8 pm in major cities. Traditionally, the French discover the face of the president-elect on television at 8 p.m.
Emmanuel Macron, 44, hopes to become the first president of the Fifth Republic to be re-elected by universal suffrage outside of coexistence. He is the frontrunner in the opinion polls. Enarque, a former investment banker, former Minister of Economy to François Hollande, in 2017 became the youngest President of the Republic, at only 39 years old. In the first round, the centrist candidate came first with 27.85% of the vote.
Marine Le Pen, a 53-year-old lawyer, is running for the third time for membership in the Elysee. The far-right opponent for a long time was elected to the European Parliament, and is now a member of the Pas-de-Calais. Five years ago he had already reached the final stage against Emmanuel Macron, the candidate of the National Rally (former National Front) got 33.9% of the vote. In the first round she took second place with 23.15%.
So your poll aggregator is the last in this presidential campaign, and it’s running from polls posted as of Friday 11:59 p.m.
How to vote
The Head of State is elected by direct universal suffrage, by individual suffrage by majority in two rounds, for a term of five years, renewable once. He must obtain an absolute majority of the votes cast in one or two rounds, regardless of turnout. The legislative elections will be held at a fast pace, with the first round taking place on June 12 and the second round on June 19.
Blank Voting and Invalid Vote
What is the difference between a blank vote, invalid vote, and abstention? Almost nothing. However, the 2014 law aims to recognize blank voting as a “citizen’s act”. The white vote includes a trip to his polling station confirming, through a gesture, the expression of refusal to choose among the candidates in the race. But since it is not counted in the final scores between each candidate, the difference remains symbolic, political or difficult but has no bearing on the elections.
To vote blank, all you have to do is put an empty envelope or a blank ballot paper of the same size as the candidates’ ballot paper in the ballot box. An incorrect vote corresponds to ballot papers without an envelope, torn or annotated, which cannot be taken into account in the results.
5 years ago, during the first duel between Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen, the white vote reached 8.52% of the electorate, and according to opinion polls, we can approach this level in view of the dislike of many voters. With the country’s three school districts on school holidays, abstinence above all else could be the biggest verdict in this second round.
The health protocol established by the authorities does not provide for any restrictions. There is no need to pass a vaccination or screening test and people who test positive for Covid-19 will be able to vote. If mask-wearing and physical distancing rules are not mandatory at polling stations, mask-wearing is still recommended.
Voter card and power of attorney
At the polling station, it is advisable to present the voter’s card, but it is not necessary. In the event of a loss, the ballot paper can still be inserted into the ballot box after an identification document such as a passport or ID card has been presented.
Proxy voting became more flexible at the beginning of the year: it now allows the voter to delegate a proxy for someone else even if he or she does not reside in the same municipality, but the person designated to vote cannot do so elsewhere than at the polling station in which he assigned the mandate. It is possible to give a power of attorney until election day, but it is advisable to do it in advance, given the processing times.
See also on The HuffPost: How Jean-Luc Mélenchon Stretched the Second Round of the Presidential Election