Emmanuel Macron's triumph over Marine Le Pen in the French presidential election has been hailed as a landslide victory for the centrist candidate and a widespread rejection of his rival's far-right platform.
But Macron's mandate may not be as overwhelming as it seems. A record number of French voters were so dismayed by their options that they either skipped the election or cast their ballots for no one at all.The so-called "ballot blanc," or white ballot, has a long history as a protest vote in France, going all the way back to the French Revolution. This time around, nearly 9% of voters cast blank or spoiled ballots -- the highest ever since the Fifth Republic was founded in 1958.
. According to a recent Ifop poll, 40% of French voters said they would cast a blank vote if it were recognized under French law.Check the graphics at the article- both interesting and unfortunately unpostable
Does anyone have the stats on percentage of population that actually voted?
It seems abstentions and votes for nobody took a larger percentage of the vote then Le Pen and Macron's win can scarcely be called triumphant!
"Now it's not the power of the people, it's the power of a few people."
The protest voteGuillaume Castevert, 46, from Bordeaux in southwest France, said he voted blanc in the final round after his favored candidate, Jean-Luc Melenchon, of the left-wing Le France insoumise movement, was knocked out in the first round.Like many voters, Castevert was scared of a Le Pen win and wanted his voice to be heard, but refused to vote for Macron, whose policies he disagrees with. "I don't want to vote against something," he told CNN. "I want to vote for something."He's also deeply unhappy with the French electoral system. "I'm quite convinced that the election system is not very democratic. In fact, it's quite the opposite," he said. "Every five years you make people feel like they are important, like their vote counts, but it doesn't really matter."Castevert said his white ballot represented a vote against both candidates and against the system he believes they represent.Democracy should be about the people, he said. "Now it's not the power of the people, it's the power of a few people."