The Latest: Macron says Le Pen's platform is based on hatred

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Posted: Apr 25, 2017 4:28 PM
The Latest: Macron says Le Pen's platform is based on hatred

PARIS (AP) — The Latest on the French presidential runoff on May 7 (all times local):

10:25 p.m.

Centrist presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron has launched a political offensive against far-right leader Marine Le Pen, saying her platform is based on the "hatred for others" in contrast to his desire to "calm" the country.

Macron and Le Pen, who took the first two spots in Sunday's French presidential election first round, are facing off in the May 7 runoff.

Macron, seen as the front-runner in polls, said on French public television news Tuesday night that there are now "two clear offers that come face to face."

He said that Le Pen and her anti-immigration anti-EU National Front party are campaigning on a platform of closing borders, weakening popular and middle classes and our economy."

On the other side, Macron, a pro-business candidate, said he belongs to the "progressive camp" with a project "to make France succeed... in a stronger Europe."

Macron accused the political establishment of "feeding" the National Front for years and waking up today with a "hangover" with Le Pen advancing to the runoff.

"We have collectively made the National Front normal," he lamented, "but its ideology is not, the values of the National Front are not the values of the (French) republic."

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1:50 p.m.

The father of far-right candidate Marine Le Pen says he thinks his daughter has produced a "too laid-back" campaign in the French presidential race.

Jean-Marie Pen told France Inter radio on Tuesday that he would have done a "Trump-style" campaign that would have been "very aggressive against those who are responsible for the country's decadency."

Jean-Marie Le Pen, who repeatedly has been convicted of crimes based on anti-Semitism and racism, founded the far-right National Front party that his daughter Marine now leads.

He still supports her candidacy in the presidential runoff on May 7 against centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron but he and his daughter have had strong political disagreements along the way.

In 2015, Marine pushed him out of the party because he had refused to desist from anti-Semitic provocations that were undermining her bid to make the National Front an acceptable political alternative.

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9:30 a.m.

French far-right presidential contender Marine Le Pen has called for more food to be produced and consumed in the country.

Le Pen, visiting the Rungis wholesale market outside Paris on Tuesday, said the French government must promote meat from France.

She says: "Let's promote the 'eating French' especially in (school) canteens where our children must take advantage of healthy, quality products."

Le Pen was booed by some workers in the fruits and vegetables section.

The National Front leader is facing pro-European centrist Emmanuel Macron in the May 7 presidential runoff.