Raphaël Glucksmann, the man who revived France’s centre-left

Raphaël Glucksmann, co-founder of the centre-left Place Publique party, emerged from a surprisingly strong showing in the June 9 European elections to find himself a key member of a new leftist alliance in France – one hastily forged to battle the far-right party leading in polls ahead of snap elections called by President Emmanuel Macron. But while the left might be demonstrating a newfound unity, Glucksmann has come under fire for striking a deal with a hard-left faction that has been accused of anti-Semitism and being soft on Russia.

Days ahead of the first round of snap parliamentary elections in France on June 30, the political world is holding its breath.

Polls show the far-right Rassemblement National (National Rally) party on track to win 35.5 percent of the vote – far outpacing the New Popular Front leftist coalition with 29.5 percent and just 19.5 percent for Ensemble (Together), which includes Macron's party.

That a broad, hastily formed leftist alliance is a solid 10 points ahead of the Macron coalition is an extraordinary showing, given years of torpidity on France’s political left.

The moderate left was rendered mute, outdone by more strident voices from Mélenchon, Macron and the National Rally on the extreme right.

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