Macron's spokesperson on Le Pen's calls for referendum
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The French leader will face Marine Le Pen on Sunday, April 24, for the second time in a bid to secure five more years as the head of state. But Mr Macron, who has had a successful career and has become one of the youngest French presidents in history, is struggling to convince voters he understands their everyday problems.
Author of “Macron Unveiled, The prototype for a new generation of world leaders”, Alain Lefebvre, claimed the French leader’s perceived “arrogance” precedes him, arguing it could cost him his fight against Ms Le Pen this Sunday.
Writing in his book, Mr Lefebvre said: “Macron’s methods do not always work. Behind an appearance of modesty and attention to others, there is a form of arrogance.
“The French President tends to think that his superior intelligence makes his judgment more reliable than that of specialists.
“This is not the case, as shown by his handling of the coronavirus crisis.
“It could cost him the re-election if he is not able to recognise it and show some humility.”
Speaking to Express.co.uk, the French author added: “He has recognised that he’s made mistakes. He’s not been specific but he’s made clear that when you are in power you make mistakes.
“So he recognises that, but it’s difficult for him not to be what he is, which is arrogant.
“He is somebody who has a high level of intelligence and he’s also been in very successful positions and now he is President.
“But it’s difficult for people to see him as somebody who understands their problems because he’s too high.”
Mr Lefebvre argued that Mr Macron was able to counterbalance his perceived arrogance with his “normal-like” wife, Brigitte Macron.
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He said: “There have been times during his tenure when he had to show that he has a wife with both feet on the ground.
“So there was a feeling among French people that he was too much of a hot gun but his wife was normal, leading a normal life, and that provided some kind of balance.
“This is not the case now. He’s not seen a lot with his wife so it’s quite difficult for him to fight against his appearance of arrogance.”
Pre-election polls are favouring Mr Macron over Ms Le Pen this Sunday, but the far-right leader has never been so close to the presidential seat.
French Prime Minister Jean Castex said on Tuesday that Mr Macron was not guaranteed to win the April 24 runoff.
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“The game is not done and dusted,” Mr Castex told France inter radio. “One puts Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen on the same level. But there are key differences.”
President Macron and Ms Le Pen are seeking to attract voters who backed far-left leader Jean Luc Melenchon, after he came third in the first round on April 10 with about 22 percent of the vote.
Mr Melenchon’s party has given no voting instructions for the runoff after its internal consultations showed most people would abstain or submit a blank vote on April 24, adding to uncertainty over the outcome.
Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire told Europe 1 radio that Le Pen would “hand France’s sovereignty to Vladimir Putin and to Russia” if she was elected, after she previously voiced admiration for the Russian president.
“I heard Marine Le Pen’s international policy proposals. This is the end of French sovereignty,” he said, adding that her victory would lead to an alliance with Putin, a lack of NATO protection and cutting ties with Germany.
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