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Relief and pride are the main emotions many French citizens are feeling after the first round of the French presidential election, in which Emmanuel Macron finished first.Gone is the sense of anxiety that had attended the weeks, days, and hours before the election, owing to fears that France would wake up to a second-round choice between the far-right Le Pen and the far-left candidate Jean-Luc Melenchon.Similarly, albeit less dramatically, if France's two main political parties had not collapsed, the 39-year-old Macron, who was unknown to most French voters a year ago, would still be just another economic whiz kid.Macron looks like a French John F. Kennedy and he campaigned in the mode of Barack Obama. Macron will have to acknowledge the cultural roots of traditional left-right divisions, while also addressing the deep-seated, revolutionary anger that now exists in France. Despite Macron's strong showing in the first round, some 40 percent of the French electorate voted for the Euroskeptic candidates Le Pen and Melenchon. Macron has demonstrated his immense qualities as a candidate.
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