Security concerns shook France’s presidential campaign on Tuesday as authorities announced arrests in a thwarted attack on the eve of the vote. Some candidates then urged tougher counter-terrorism efforts for a country already under a state of emergency.
Security has already been a strong campaign theme and conservative candidate Marine Le Pen hardened her tone on Tuesday in respect of foreign extremists and border controls. Meanwhile her opponent, Emmanuel Macron, was calling for national unity.
Macron appears to be too stupid to realize that ‘national unity’ in these times means, to the French people, a clear vote for Le Pen and not for more of the same in the shape the national division that has been forced into French society over the last decade.
Polls show Le Pen and Macron among four leading candidates with a chance of coming out on top of Sunday’s first round and reaching the May 7 runoff, in an unpredictable vote seen as a bellwether for global populist sentiment.
Europe is looking to see if the French people will follow up the British Brexit result last year and vote for radical change.
With security ramped up for the campaign, French police arrested two suspected radicals on Tuesday in the southern port city of Marseille and thwarted an attack planned for the coming days, ‘on the eve of the French presidential election,’ the interior minister said.
He gave no details, and it is unclear whether the attack could have targeted a campaign event.
However it is a clear example of evolving Islamic tactics, ‘vote for closed borders and you can expect more of this.’ And ‘try to keep us out and we will be even more angry with you.’
The French won’t fear this on election day. They have already had enough of it.
Before the thwarted attack was announced, Le Pen said on RTL radio Tuesday that she would expel foreign extremists and draft army reservists to close France’s borders as soon as she takes office.
“We cannot fight the terrorism that weighs on our country without controlling our borders,” Le Pen said. This is something that the French people have been waiting to hear.
Meanwhile Macron struck a more liberal tone. He called the arrests a reminder that ‘the terrorist threat remains very high, especially during the election campaign,’ and reiterated calls for pressure on internet companies to better police extremism online.
He added that ‘terrorism is a challenge that calls upon us more than anything else to come together, because the terrorists wish nothing more than our division.’
Macron has pledged more robust counter-terrorism efforts but remains committed to Europe’s open borders, which of course is an oxymoron and another clue that he is, in fact, an idiot.
Le Pen also said she would issue an order to freeze long-term visas for a two-week period so the government can verify, among other things, that the recipients aren’t taking jobs away from French citizens.
Le Pen, who has campaigned against immigration and Europe’s open borders, also wants to impose a 10-percent tax on labor contracts that go to foreigners.
The French media would like you to believe that the economy is front and center for the candidates, which may or may not be true. However, it is clear that immigration control is front and center for the French people, who are the ones doing the voting this coming weekend.