- The Washington Times - Sunday, April 23, 2017


Americans who want President Trump to succeed should cheer for Marine Le Pen, his favorite in the French presidential runoff elections on May 7.

If Madame Le Pen prevails, Mr. Trump will have a friend in France. If it’s former President Obama’s main man in Paris, Emmanuel Macron, then not so much. As you would figure, Monsieur Macron is an open-borders, European Union-loving believer in humanity as the culprit behind global warming.

Game’s on because no candidate won the majority needed for the presidency in Sunday’s election.

Obama-admiring Americans sur la gauche (as the French say — or would say if they used my dictionary) will find a friend in a President Macron, an oh-so liberal economist who, judging from his words, is aroused by the very mention of open borders, European Union membership and every Frenchman’s required use of the EU common currency, the Euro.

Stunning the establishment — sound familiar? — Madame Le Pen, 48, won one of the two runoff slots, a feat which conventional wisdom possessors deemed at first about as unlikely as Donald Trump’s winning the GOP nomination last July.

A lawyer and divorcée with children, she is a France-first conservative populist, skeptical about just how much human actions have to do with global temperatures.

The shuddering thought that there could be a President Le Pen of course drew an excréments sacrés! from the left and the establishment, which are pretty much the same folks in France as in the U.S.

You can just hear the bourgeois femmes in the fashionable suburbs saying, “I mean, really, that Le Pen woman wants to preserve what she says is left of French culture — just when we’re all getting the hang of globalist look! And can you believe she wants to ban wearing of Muslim hijabs or the garb of any religion in public. She claims it’s not French. Isn’t it? Funny, I don’t remember.”

She once refused an interview until a French TV channel removed the European flag standing next to the French flag. “I want to become president of France, not of the European Commission,” she said.

Madame Le Pen is said to hate being identified as the daughter of Jean-Marie Le Pen, the founder of the National Front. She has actually kicked her dad out of the party for sounding over-the-top on restricting immigration.

So get ready for the French version of the Thrilla in Manila — kind-of-like a Donald Trump-Hillary Clinton head-to-head repeat slugfest, across the Atlantic, 3,800 miles from our shores.

How do the French say politics ends at the water’s edge? Who cares. It doesn’t.

• Ralph Z. Hallow, chief political writer at The Washington Times, has covered Washington since 1982.

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