France, like the other Member States, saw its voter turnout reach a record-breaking level, with 50.12% voter participation, an 8% increase from the last elections five years ago.
In France, both the populist Rassemblement National (RN)party and the majority La République en Marche (LaREM) party emerged as the leading forces in this election. With 23.31% of the vote (22 MEPs, +1 after ‘Brexit’), RN has done slightly better than it did in the last presidential elections while maintaining its record score in the 2014 European Parliament elections. LaREM - which ran in the election for the first time - clearly attracted a center-right and pro-Europe electorate but with only 22.41% (21 MEPs, +2 after ‘Brexit’), narrowly lost its bid to become the first political force at the French level.
The results also confirmed the seismic shift reverberating in French politics since the last presidential elections: the two historical mainstream parties, LR and PS, have been overtaken, and with respectively 8.48% (8 MEPs elected) and 6.19% (5 MEPs, +1 after the Brexit), they will have little influence to yield at either the French or European level.
With 13.48% and 12 elected MEPs (+1 MEP after ‘Brexit’) the Greens (EELV) became the third force, attracting a center-left electorate and the youth vote.
The far-left party La France Insoumise (LFI) failed to recreate the momentum of the 2017 presidential race (+19%) and only attracted 6.31% of voters, giving them 6 MEPs. This is a clear failure for a party which self-proclaimed itself to be the leading force of the left and the Government’s strongest challenger.