Marine Le Pen's lead widens in latest electoral poll

24 February, 2017, 17:34 | Author: Eileen Guzman
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His has drawn support away from the struggling French Socialist Party by positioning himself as the only candidate who is able to transcend the left-right divide and successfully defeat the far-right Front National candidate Marine Le Pen.

Le Pen told reporters during a news conference at Smallville hotel in Badaro that she "informed them [Dar al-Fatwa] that I don't cover my head, but they didn't cancel the meeting".

Ms Le Pen now leads in the polls for the first round of the presidential election and is expected to face centre-left Emmanuel Macron, who is running as an independent candidate, in the second round.

Le Pen is on a four-day visit to Lebanon, where she already met Christian President Michel Aoun and Sunni Muslim Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri.

She is now at the centre of a fake jobs corruption enquiry in France, but is expected to win the first round of voting in presidential elections in April.

Le Pen said during her meeting with the Lebanese president that the two countries should be "pillars" in organizing the fight against Islamic fundamentalism.

"I don't think she will be able to (win the election), you do see from the polls that she will have a lot of trouble in the second round of the presidential election", Dr Helbert said.

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Ms Le Pen has meanwhile walked out of a meeting with the leading Muslim cleric in Lebanon in a row over a headscarf.

In nearby Germany this week, the state of Bavaria moved to ban full-face veils in schools, universities, government workplaces and polling stations, as Bavarian conservatives move to stem the flow of votes to the anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany. Le Pen's body guard, who was also interrogated today, was released without being charged.

Prior to the detentions, Le Pen slammed the case as a "political plot" against her, stressing that the voters would never fall for it.

Police meanwhile detained far-right candidate Marine Le Pen's bodyguard and chief of staff in custody for questioning over alleged misuse of European Union funds to pay parliamentary assistants, Le Pen's lawyer said.

An Elabe poll on Tuesday showed Fillon's share rising to between 20 and 21 per cent and Macron's falling to between 17 and 18.5 percent for the first round on April 23.

Correspondents say Ms Le Pen is trying to burnish her foreign policy credentials with her trip.

"France's 10-year spread with Germany has been rising at a much faster rate than other European bond spreads in Europe during February, which has coincided with Le Pen's increasing chance of winning the Presidential election".

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