27, November 2016
Former French Prime Minister Francois Fillon has won the country’s center-right party’s nomination in the presidential primary. Fillon won the vote on Sunday night, after his opponent former Prime Minister Alain Juppe conceded defeat. “France wants the truth and France wants action,” said Fillon after vowing to “reach out to all those who want to serve the country.”
“The left means failure, the far-right means bankruptcy,” he added, stressing that he would be the candidate of “all those who in their hearts are proud to be French.” Juppe conceded after initial result showed Fillon had gained the majority of the votes, winning 67 percent of the ballots with results counted from 9,193 polling stations out of 10,229. During his speech, Juppe congratulated Fillon on his “large victory” and wished him “good luck” in his campaign for France’s next year presidential elections.
In the first round of the primary election, which had been held on November 20, Fillon took the lead among seven candidates with 44.1 percent of the votes. Juppe garnered 28.5.
During his campaign, Fillon vowed extreme free-market reforms, a hard line stance on refugees, and closer relations with Russia.
Projections show that Fillon will face far-right National Front (FN) leader Marine Le Pen in the first round of the presidential election in April 2017.