French centrist presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron’s election campaign took a step forward on Sunday as the Socialist party chose a champion with a hard-left agenda and the centre right battled to contain a scandal over fake pay.
Thousands of supporters gave embattled conservative candidate Francois Fillon and his wife, Penelope, a rousing ovation at a rally in a show of support after his campaign was thrown off track by allegations of misuse of public funds relating to employment she carried out.
The ruling Socialists produced the last main candidate for the election, due to take place in April and May. They chose leftwinger Benoit Hamon for the ticket, a move likely only to boost the chances of winning for Macron, an independent.
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