Pro-European Macron wins a crucial election

Europe stronger with Macron victory

Europe’s political establishment entered 2017 in a state of panic. Britain had voted to leave the European Union six months before and the United States had just elected a president who was hostile to their grand project and the values it stood for. The same forces that had led to Brexit and Donald Trump – popular anger with distant elites, economic inequality and immigration – threatened to hit the continent hard in a year in which Europe’s largest countries were holding elections. The biggest risk of all was France, a country with an ailing economy, historic ambivalence toward the EU and a politician, in National Front leader Marine Le Pen, who seemed well positioned to seize on voter fears.

Instead, on Sunday, Le Pen was soundly defeated by Emmanuel Macron, a 39-year-old independent who ran on an unashamedly pro-European platform. Macron urged the French to embrace rather than reject globalization. And he vowed to work with Germany to relaunch the European Union, a project long seen as a guarantor of peace and prosperity but one which is now struggling to find its “raison d’etre” after years of crisis. Macron’s victory represents a reprieve for Europe and the liberal democratic values for which it has stood for more than half a century.

http://www.reuters.com…  Mon.,  08  May 2017