Germany’s Scholz Says He Hopes Le Pen Won’t Win French Elections

(Bloomberg) -- German Chancellor Olaf Scholz waded into French politics by voicing his hopes that Marine Le Pen’s far-right National Rally won’t win the country’s parliamentary elections.

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“I’m worried about the elections in France, I want to say that explicitly,” Scholz said in an interview with ARD public broadcaster on Sunday.

“I hope that parties that are not Le Pen, to put it that way, are successful in the election. But that is for the French people to decide,” the center-left leader added.

Regardless of the outcome of the French snap election, Germany would still work with President Emmanuel Macron as the main point person for bilateral and European cooperation, Scholz said.

French markets sold off sharply following Macron’s surprise decision to dissolve the National Assembly and call a snap election after his party was trounced by Le Pen’s National Rally in European Union elections on June 9. The far-right party is leading in opinion polls a week before the first round of voting on June 30, largely at the expense of Macron’s centrist bloc.

The election gamble has put France’s stretched public accounts back in focus and raised questions about the future of Macron’s agenda. Investors are demanding the biggest premium in over a decade to hold French bonds compared to safer German debt, as concerns mount that parties vying to win France’s legislative elections may further bloat public finances.

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