Arrogant Macron showed true colours in debate after five years of contempt

Emmanuel Macron 'wants to avoid the debate' says Jacobelli

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President Macron, 44, who was widely seen as the winner of the pair’s 2017 encounter, was widely criticised for his “arrogant” attitude while appearing on the debate. The candidates confronted each other on the cost of living, Russia, climate change and immigration.

Around 15.6 million viewers watched the debate, in which Mr Macron accused his rival of being dependent on Russian power while Marine Le Pen called him a hypocrite on climate change.

Spiralling prices have dominated the campaign and immediately took centre stage in the debate.

Ms Le Pen said 70 percent of the French people believed their standard of living had fallen over the past five years and she would be the President of civil peace and national brotherhood.

She said: “We need to give priority to the French in their own country.”

Reacting to the debate, French MEP Jordan Bardella (RN) tweeted: “Emmanuel Macron was in his chair last night with the contemptuous and arrogant attitude that we know him for.

“Despite the attacks aimed at her, Marine Le Pen showed the French people the solidity of her project, the horizon she proposes for the country.

“It was striking. Emmanuel Macron has no project, except for retirement at 65 and another five years of contempt and arrogance.

“Let’s turn the page. Marine Le Pen is ready to lead our country and engage its recovery.”

Throughout the debate, it was Mr Macron who went on the offensive, appearing more like a challenger than an incumbent, repeatedly interrupting his rival, critics have stated.

MEP Thierry Mariani (RN) tweeted to her followers: “Condescension, disdain, smugness, arrogance… no doubt, it was Macron who was debating with Marine Le Pen.”

Despite a strong performance from Ms Le Pen, a snap Elabe poll of voters suggested 59 percent of viewers thought Mr Macron had come out the winner.

French politician Bruno Bilde (RN) tweeted: “In the face of his contempt and arrogance, Marine’s calm, rigour and solidity proved to everyone that France and the French people deserve a serene president and a comprehensive programme that addresses all French people.

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“The arrogance, the contempt, the violence of the remarks towards Marine and millions of French people are obvious tonight.

“The 2022 debate shows that Macron decides alone, without understanding and hearing what the French need.

“He is a president who pushes and crushes.”

Additional reporting by Maria Ortega.

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