Emmanuel Macron has decisively won the French presidential elections with 66.06% votes. His opponent, far-right candidate Marine Le Pen, was defeated with 33.94% of the votes. Mr. Macron will become the youngest president in French history (he is 39, one year younger than Louis-Napoleon, Napoleon Bonaparte’s nephew, who was elected in 1848) and also the first head of France who does not belong to a major political party.
In his speech, Mr. Macron said that he hoped to be “a page of hope and renewed trust,” adding that he had heard “the rage, anxiety and doubt that a lot of you have expressed” and vowed to spend his five years in office “fighting the forces of division that undermine France”. He also added that he would “guarantee the unity of the nation and … defend and protect Europe.” He urged the French to embrace, rather than reject, globalization and promised to work with Germany to revamp the European Union. Mr. Macron’s supporters gathered in thousands in front of the Louvre museum in Paris where he addressed the crowds with a powerful message: “Tonight you won, France won. Everyone told us it was impossible, but they don’t know France.”
European leaders hurried to congratulate Mr. Macron on his victory. Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, tweeted: “Congratulations @EmmanuelMacron. Congratulations to French people for choosing Liberty, Equality and Fraternity over tyranny of fake news.” Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, also expressed his congratulations and said he was very happy that the French people had chosen a European future. “Together for a stronger and fairer Europe,” he said. Mr. Macron’s victory has generally been hailed as a sigh of relief for Europe and the liberal democratic values for which the European Union has stood for more than 50 years.