Robert Ménard, a former journalist who has served as Mayor of Béziers in southern France since 2014, is a right-winger (French media call him “far-right”) and a supporter of Marine Le Pen in the upcoming presidential election (April 10, second round April 24). But despite his loyalties, Ménard has been urging both Le Pen and the other “far-right” front runner, Jewish candidate Eric Zemmour, to align with each other or face their inevitable fate as “the most suicidal right-wingers in the world.”
A Wednesday IFOP poll gave Le Pen 16.5% of the first-round vote, and Zemmour 13.5%. Meanwhile, the incumbent, President Emmanuel Macron, would get 27% of the first-round votes, and a conservative candidate, Valérie Pécresse, would get 16.5%, same as Le Pen, but could do better than her – in which case Macron and Pécresse would move to the final round and Le Pen and Zemmour will get the consolation prizes.
Ménard said he had dinner with both candidates: “I told them, you are mad as hell, you risk finding yourselves in a situation where neither of them will be in the second round and it will be Mrs. Pécresse,” he related.
According to the IFOP poll, Pécresse and Le Pen would lose the run-off to Macron, regardless of which one of them made it to the April 24 round.