Voters deal another blow to nationalists in French election
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Newly elected, pro-European Union French President Emmanuel Macron’s party made significant gains in the country’s first round of parliamentary elections Sunday. 

“France is back,” French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe declared on Sunday, according to The Associated Press. 

Exit polls show over 30 percent of voters chose Macron’s party, En Marche!, according to Reuters.


Roughly 47 million French citizens are eligible to vote in the election, where they would choose 577 members of the National Assembly, which is France’s lower house of parliament. The representatives elected will serve five-year terms.

This result could give the president roughly three-quarters of lower-house seats in next week’s second round of voting.

If Macron’s party is successful, it would be the second blow in over a month to France’s far-right nationalist party, the National Front. Macron defeated the National Front’s Marine Le Pen in May. Low turnout is considered a major factor in their defeat Sunday.

Early polls show the National Front underperforming in polls, while the En Marche! makes significant in roads.

Losses for the National Front would mark another loss for Europe’s nationalist parties.

The election comes a week after dramatic losses for Conservatives and nationalists in the U.K.’s general election, which some experts say indicates a negative reaction to the U.K.'s decision to leave the European Union. The left-leaning Labour Party gained seats, leaving Prime Minister Theresa May clinging to power.

Austrian and Dutch voters also largely rejected anti-immigrant and populist sentiment in elections held in December and March.

While President Trump never officially endorsed a candidate in France’s recent presidential election, Trump said the nationalist Le Pen was the "strongest on borders.” He later told Macron “you were my guy,” however.

Trump also frequently praised former U.K. Independence Party (UKIP) leader Nigel Farage amid his Brexit campaign, making several public appearances with Farage.

Trump pleased many nationalists this month when he announced he would pull the U.S. out of the nearly 200-nation Paris climate accord.

The president also scolded members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) at a summit in Brussels in May.