New Polls Show French National Rally Forging Ahead of Macron

(Bloomberg) -- France’s National Rally continued to cement its lead in opinion polls a week before the country’s snap parliamentary election, largely at the expense of President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist bloc.

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Support for Marine Le Pen’s far-right party was pegged at 36% in a survey by Elabe published Sunday in La Tribune Dimanche. That’s ahead of 27% for the left-wing New Popular Front alliance, and just 20% for Macron’s movement.

In another poll by Ipsos published on Sunday, Macron’s approval rating tumbled by 4 percentage points, to 28%.

Voters are also putting more trust in National Rally compared with other groups on how it would handle the economy, despite its lack of government experience and absence of a precise funding plan, according to a second Ipsos poll published Sunday in the Financial Times.

The survey showed that 25% of voters trust the party to make the correct decisions on the economy, including on improving living standards and tackling inflation, while 22% and 20%, respectively, have such confidence in the New Popular Front and Macron’s movement respectively.

Macron dissolved the National Assembly and called a snap legislative vote after his group was trounced in this month’s European Parliament elections. The first round of voting is scheduled for June 30 and the second for July 7.

Forecasting the number of seats each party could get is complicated by France’s two-round electoral system.

A projection by Elabe showed that National Rally and affiliated candidates could have 250 to 280 lawmakers in the next parliament, short of the 289 needed for an absolute majority.

Polls published on Saturday also showed National Rally building a sizable lead, with one projection showing it has at least a chance at an outright majority.

Elabe interviewed 2,002 people online between June 19 and June 21. Ipsos interviewed 1,000 people online between June 19 and June 20. For the second poll in the Financial Times, Ipsos surveyed 2,000 people on June 19-20.

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(Updates with poll on economic issues from fourth paragraph.)

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