May the best one win

Ava Hunt, News Editor

As Sheryl Sandberg, an American business executive, billionaire and philanthropist, once said, “In the future, there will be no female leaders.There will just be leaders.” On September 12, two female French politicians, Marine Le Pen and Anne Hidalgo, started their presidential campaigns with hopes of becoming France’s first female leader. Le Pen is President of the far-right National Rally, while Hidalgo is Mayor of Paris and a member of the Socialist Party. The French Socialist Party is a center- left political group affiliated with the idea of social democracy. Social democracy promotes the ideas of eliminating oppression and inequality, as well as universally accessible public services. The French National Rally is a far- right group that supports multiple ideologies, including French nationalism, anti-immigration, national conservatism and more. Hidalgo and Le Pen are both challenging President Emmanuel Macron in next year’s spring election, with hopes to inspire many. Hidalgo is currently favored to win the Socialist Party nomination for the election. She is the daughter of Spanish immigrants who fled their country to find freedom during dictator Francisco Franco’s rule. Franco was the head of the government of Spain until 1973 and the head of state until 1975. “I want all children in France to have the same opportunities I had,” Hidalgo said. Hidalgo has made numerous promises if she wins the presidential election, including having a greener economy in France and making improvements in education. On the other hand, Le Pen launched her campaign with the promise to defend French liberty. “Re-elected President of the National Assembly by the members, your confidence honors and obliges me. Let us unite for victory,” Le Pen said. Back in May of 2017, Macron defeated Le Pen in the French presidential election, winning by 66.06% to 33.94%. During this election, Macron presented himself as both right and left politically and as someone who would change the technocratic French government system. Now, with the current upcoming presidential election, Macron’s approval ratings have noticeably decreased as some people are confused on where he stands politically. When Macron was elected, he had a 62% approval rating from the people of France. However, now his approval rating has plummeted to 37%. Hidalgo and Le Pen hope to defeat Macron in next year’s election and bring more unity and hope to the French population. More updates will come as the election gets closer.