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The Latest: Macron Hits French Southwest in Final Stretch

The Latest: Macron Hits French Southwest in Final Stretch

Friday, 05 May 2017 05:26 AM

PARIS (AP) — The Latest on the French presidential elections (all times local):

11:00 a.m.

On the last day of France's presidential campaign, centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron mingled with the crowd in the small streets of the southwestern town of Rodez.

Smiling, taking selfies and shaking hands, he stayed for a few minutes in a local cafe. He also visited the 16th century cathedral without press.

People wished him "courage" and luck ahead of Sunday's runoff against far-right rival Marine Le Pen.

Some leftist voters told him they will choose him on Sunday but will remain vigilant about his pro-business project they fear will weaken workers' protections.

Macron listened, always smiling — yet didn't answer.

9:35 a.m.

Protests are breaking out in Paris on the last day of campaigning before the French presidential election, with environmental activists dangling off the Eiffel Tower and students blocking the entrance to high schools.

Activists for Greenpeace slipped into the Eiffel Tower around 5 a.m. and hung a banner with the French national motto: Liberty, Equality, Fraternity. Six activists then rappelled down the tower's archway.

The sign was removed about 45 minutes after it was unfurled.

Meanwhile, the Paris school district says 10 high schools are completely or partially blocked by student protesters who say they oppose both presidential candidates.

9:05 a.m.

French centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron says his country has to find a common destiny and overcome the anger that is dividing it.

Macron, in the last day of campaigning for the presidential election, told Europe 1 radio that if he is elected his duty will be to "ensure that the country keeps its balance."

He said Friday he had chosen as his prime minister someone with enough political experience to help bring together a legislative majority but refused to name his choice.

Despite a testy debate with far-right leader Marine Le Pen on Wednesday, Macron insisted that — should he win — she would be the first person he would call.

8:35 a.m.

French far-right leader Marine Le Pen says her anger during the presidential debate against her centrist rival is a reflection of the anger she sees throughout France.

In the last day of campaigning before Sunday's presidential vote, Le Pen acknowledged the testy debate between her and Emmanuel Macron.

"My words were nothing but the reflection of the anger that will explode in this country," she told RTL radio on Friday.

She criticized Macron as the candidate of the elite and said the French have had enough of their political and economic situation.

In recent years, Le Pen has tried to soften the profile of the National Front party founded by her father. The party has long been accused of racism and anti-Semitism.

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The Latest on the French presidential elections (all times local):11:00 a.m.On the last day of France's presidential campaign, centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron mingled with the crowd in the small streets of the southwestern town of Rodez.Smiling, taking selfies and...
EU,France,Election,The Latest
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2017-26-05
Friday, 05 May 2017 05:26 AM
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