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Le Pen most serious rival to Macron in presidential race

According to the survey, Macron might win the race with 55 per cent of the vote, provided his opponent in the runoff is Le Pen.

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Paris: Incumbent French President Emmanuel Macron will win the second round of the upcoming presidential election, scheduled for April, despite tough rivalry from Marine Le Pen, head of the right-wing National Rally party, according to an opinion poll by Opinionway-Kea Partners, released on Wednesday.

According to the survey, Macron might win the race with 55 per cent of the vote, provided his opponent in the runoff is Le Pen.

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Should Macron face Republican candidate Valerie Pecresse in the second round, he may win with 57 per cent of the vote; if Eric Zemmour of the far-right Reconquete party enters the runoff, the outgoing leader is likely to receive 63 per cent of the vote, the poll showed.

The survey was conducted from February 27 to March 2 among 1,642 respondents. The margin of statistical error is between 1.1 per cent to 2.5 per cent. The first round of the French presidential election will take place on April 10 and the second one on April 24.

Before Friday, the candidates have to submit 500 signatures of elected officials supporting them to the Constitutional Council. On March 7, the body will issue the final list of presidential candidates.

As of now, a total of 11 presidential hopefuls have gathered over 500 signatures, including Macron, Pecresse, Le Pen, Zemmour, far-left politician Jean-Luc Melenchon; candidate from the French Greens Yannick Jadot; candidate from the Socialists Anne Hidalgo; and Communist Party leader Fabien Roussel. 

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