French far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen is “temporarily” stepping down as leader of the National Front party.
It appeared to be an attempt to distance herself from the racist element of her party and appeal to a wider range of potential voters.
The party leader last night came second in the first round of the French Presidential election, putting her through to the final run-off next week.
In a dramatic announcement on the live prime time France 2 television news broadcast at 8pm, the 48-year-old said: “It is essential to take leave of the National Front, and this evening I am no longer the president of the National Front.
“I am only the presidential candidate – I will feel more free, and above partisan considerations.”
She said she wanted to use her candidacy to “unite all French people”.
She’s the daughter of Jean Marie Le Pen, who founded the National Front and was its leader …