Marine Le Pen and the French media – The Listening Post (Lead)

The race to become France’s next president is down to two candidates, Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen. This is the first time since 2002 that the French media have had a candidate from the far right Front National to cover in the run off, Marine Le Pen.

Back in 2002, her father, Jean-Marie was the candidate. But the prospect of an Elysee Palace occupied by the far right figure led the French establishment – including the media – to close ranks. That Le Pen was crushed at the polls.

A lot has changed since then, in politics and media, and this Le Pen’s hoping the French establishment, media included, is no longer the force it once was. Le Pen is running as an anti-establishment candidate but then that’s what her opponent, Emmanuel Macron, calls himself too.

Macron’s not fooling anyone in the media with that line – he is, after all, a former cabinet minister and an ex-investment banker. The proof of that lies in the fact the French media are clearly siding with him.

For a skilled media practitioner, though, like Marine Le Pen, that could work in her favour.

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