PARIS — Emmanuel Macron, the not-yet-40 former economy minister and banker, carried the French presidential election on Sunday, beating Marine Le Pen by a wider-than-expected margin of 66 to 34.
Macron struck a solemn tone, saying he wouldn’t ignore the mixed message from Sunday. Turnout was the lowest for a presidential vote since the 1969 election. Millions spoiled their ballots, unable to support either candidate. Yet Macron was also resolute, reiterating his commitment to “defending Europe” and saying he “wouldn’t be stopped by any obstacle” to his plan to reform France.
This French election, more than any in recent memory, resonated throughout Europe and across the Atlantic. In the wake of Brexit and Donald Trump’s unexpected victory last year, it offered a stark choice between a liberal, establishment vision for France and Europe personified by Macron and a nationalist, protectionist one offered by Le Pen.
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