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When they go to the polls on Sunday, voters in France will be faced with the same two presidential candidates as 2017: Emmanuel Macron, the president and a polished centrist, and Marine Le Pen, the leader of the far-right National Rally party.
Yet the context is different. There is a war in Europe, and the contest is tight.
What are the stakes in the runoff election, and how has the race become so close?
On today’s episode
President Emmanuel Macron will face Marine Le Pen, the far-right leader, in the runoff on Sunday. The outcome will be crucial for France and reverberate globally.
No French president has been the object of such intense dislike among significant segments of the population as Mr. Macron. How deep that loathing runs will be a critical factor in the election.
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Roger Cohen contributed reporting.
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