Paris mayor calls for leftists to unite behind one candidate in presidential election

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo, the French Socialist Party's candidate for president, called for leftist parties to rally behind a single candidate in April’s presidential election, Reuters reported.

In an interview with French media outlet TF1, Hidalgo said that if the leftist party doesn’t unite, it "will find it impossible to continue to exist in our country."

According to opinion polls, none of the three leftist presidential candidates would make it to a runoff election against front-runner and current President Emmanuel MacronEmmanuel Jean-Michel MacronFrench Senate votes to ban headscarves during sport competitions New French law bans unvaccinated from restaurants, venues Europe's energy conflict fuels outbreak of realism about climate policy MORE, who is a centrist, Reuters reported. 

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Hidalgo said unity on the left could help raise the profile of issues such as climate protection and public education.

The Parisian mayor is polling around 5 percent behind Greens candidate Yannick Jadot and far-left candidate Jean-Luc Melenchon, according to Reuters. 

"We have no more time to lose," Hidalgo told TF1. 

French Socialists had controlled both chambers of parliament and the presidency until 2017, when Macron was elected president, Reuters noted. 

Former economy and industry minister Arnaud Montebourg said he will pull out of his presidential campaign to support a joint left-wing candidate, Reuters noted.

None of the remaining three leftist candidates have said whether they will make a similar move, Reuters reported.