Former French Economy Minister, founder and president of the political movement "En Marche !" AFP / FRED TANNEAU
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On the right, four former center-right ministers have backed Macron, illustrating Fillon's struggle to rally moderates behind free-market policies harking back to former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.When the management of the small UDI party endorsed Fillon, the party's youth wing sent a furious statement announcing that their 130 elected officials and supporters would back Macron.An Odoxa poll this month showed Macron would get 16 percent to 24 percent of votes in the first round in April, putting him within a whisker of Le Pen and Fillon.One Socialist MP, who declined to be named, said as many as two-thirds of the party's lawmakers could swing behind Macron if the Socialists choose one of the most left-wing candidates at their primaries this month.Sirugue, the Socialist MP who turned down Macron in May, told Reuters that the presidential hopeful had since toned down his free-market message and was now more presentable.
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