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Marine Le Pen replaced as head of France’s leading far-right party

Marine Le Pen was replaced as President of France’s most extreme party, National Rally.

Jordan Bardella is the first outsider to lead the party’s 50-year-old foundation.

The 27-year old is a member in the European Parliament. He won an internal party ballot and received 85% of votes.

His election is crucial for the National Rally as the party seeks out to capitalize on its unprecedented success in this year’s legislative elections and Ms Le Pen’s performance in the presidential race.


It is also in the midst of widespread public anger after a member of National Rally parliament this week told another legislator to “go home to Africa”.

Ms Le Pen stated that she would like to concentrate on leading the party’s 89 members of the National Assembly.

It is expected that she will still wield considerable power within the party and to run for the presidency again in 2027.

France: More

Since Ms Le Pen’s entry into the presidential race last January, Mr Bardella was the interim president for the National Rally.

Louis Aliot (53), the mayor of Perpignan, was his opponent and a senior official from the party for over two decades.

Mr Aliot was a passionate supporter of Ms Le Pen’s rise and her former partner. He won 15% of the party vote.

Ms. Le Pen was defeated by Emmanuel Macron in her third attempt for the presidency, but she won 44% of national votes, her highest ever score.

Her party won the most seats in parliament’s lower house two months later.

Ms. Le Pen has taken great measures to erase the stigma of racism, antisemitism and clinging to the National Rally. She also sought to soften its image to increase her reach.

‘New generation’

She has been particularly distant from Jean-Marie Le Pen her father, who was co-founded the party that was then known as the National Front.

Jean-Yves Camus, political scientist, stated that Bardella was part of a group of very young people who supported Marine Le Pen in 2010. He also said that they wouldn’t have joined Jean-Marie Le Pen’s National Rally.

“Progress today can be described as localism. It is called protecting borders. It’s called protectionionism,” said Mr Bardella in 2019, ahead of European Elections. He rejected “massive migration”.

Over the last few months, over 40,000 party members voted online in order to elect the new leader of the party.


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