Bank loan

French far-right leader Le Pen boosts campaign with bank loan

(Bloomberg) – The French Navy Extreme right leader Le Pen has finally got a bank loan for his campaign in financial difficulty to challenge President Emmanuel Macron.

A candidate for the April presidential election has obtained a loan of € 10.6 million ($ 11.8 million) from a European bank, told Agence France-Presse Jordan Bardella, President of his National Rally party.

Banks were reluctant to help finance the campaign of Le Pen, a sign that she is still considered toxic by many companies despite its efforts to achieve more moderate voters.

Earlier this week, Le Pen told Bloomberg News she could be forced to run a very low-cost campaign if she couldn’t get funding.

Marine Le Pen denounces Zemmour, her far-right rival, deeming her too extreme, even for her

Polls consistently give Macron around 25% of the vote in the first round of elections. Le Pen and another right-wing candidate, Valérie Pécresse, are vying for second place, with around 17%, according to polls. The far-right television specialist Eric Zemmour, who votes about 12%, is eating away at part of Le Pen’s and Pecresse’s electorate.

Le Pen, 53, has long complained that the new rules restrict candidates’ ability to raise funds. Since 2017, only European banks can lend money to French presidential candidates. In the past, Le Pen’s party obtained a loan of 9 million euros from a Russian company. His party is also riddled with debt.

She was beaten by Macron in the second round of elections five years ago by 33 percentage points.

Banks have their own internal parameters for considering lending. A high number of polls is usually required, as well as assurances that the candidate meets the legal requirement of 500 elected signatures.

In 2017, Macron’s campaign spent around 17 million euros compared to around 14 million for Le Pen, according to public data. The State reimburses part of the candidates’ expenses.

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