Nationalists on Course to Win French Parliamentary Elections as 250,000 Demonstrate Against the Party

In France, a coalition of left-wing groups joined forces on Saturday to protest against the rising popularity of the country’s nationalist political movement. Two weeks ahead of snap parliamentary elections, the National Rally party is leading in the polls.

According to the French police, 250,000 people demonstrated across France. In Paris, 75,000 gathered at Place de la République and marched despite the rain. The turnout was lower than past major protests, however, such as the “Yellow Vests” or pension-reform protests. Youth groups and student unions are playing a prominent role in the anti-nationalist campaign.

French President Emmanuel Macron called for snap elections following his defeat to Marine Le Pen’s National Rally party in the recent European elections. Ms. Le Pen’s party is advocating for a dramatic reduction in both legal and illegal immigration, the deportation of foreign-born criminals, and a crackdown on social and tax fraud.