EMMANUEL Macron has beaten Marine Le Pen in Sunday’s French election and taken more than 65 per cent of the vote, according to exit polls.
Polling conducted by Ipsos, Ifop and BVA all gave Mr Macron, the pro-business candidate, a strong lead over Front National leader Marine Le Pen.
Supporters of the new President – who formed his party just 12 months ago and has no MPs – gathered at the Louvre in Paris ahead of the announcement and erupted in cheers waving the tricolour flag as it was announced.
Friends danced and hugged each other, thrilled with the result they saw as hope triumphing over fear.
“I’m happy Marcon won because he’s not racist,” one man known only as Fofana told news.com.au.
En Marche! volunteer, Luca Jaouem, 19, said he was “very glad” to see the result. “He’s going to renew the government and the institutions, that’s what France needs,” he said.
Another young supporter Corentin, 18, had voted for the first time having worked for the campaign for nine months. “I’m very happy France chose the right guy,” he said. “[Marine Le Pen] is not how we want France represented.
Others were not so convinced, with some opting to “vote blanc” in protest and leave their ballot blank. Romain, 25, said he decided to abstain after watching the last debate and despairing at the state of the candidates.