Macron's party on course for historic gains in French parliamentary election

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(File photo) French President Emmanuel Macron

(CNN) — Emmanuel Macron's centrist La Republique En Marche is projected to win a huge majority in the French Parliament, according to exit estimates compiled for CNN affiliate BFMTV by Elabe.

Macron's fledgling party is expected to win between 415 and 445 seats in the lower house after taking a projected 32.3% of the vote.

Such a margin of victory in the 577-seat house would give Macron the majority he so badly craves to further his political revolution. The 39-year-old's La Republique En Marche (LREM) party is hoping to make huge gains and inflict a further blow on the country's traditional ruling parties.

It would be a remarkable achievement for Macron, who won the French presidency last month without the support of a traditional mainstream party.

Instead, his En Marche! movement helped carry him to a convincing election victory over far-right candidate Marine Le Pen.

Macron's party contested 526 constituencies out of a possible 577. His party put forward 266 women candidates, while 219 come from outside politics. He has drawn candidates from a cross-section of society, including a former bullfighter, a Nobel Prize winner, and an ex-fighter pilot.

How the elections work

There are 7,782 candidates vying for the 577 seats in the lower house of France's Parliament, with Macron's party requiring 289 for a minimum majority.

To win a seat in the first round of voting candidates had to win more than half of the votes, which must account for at least a quarter of the registered voters.

If no candidate manages to achieve that target, then all candidates who won at least 12.5% of registered voters go to the second round, where the winner will advance to Parliament.

Both the Republican and Socialist parties, which have traditionally governed during the time of the Fifth Republic, both struggled with turnout, which was projected at 49.5% by Elabe.

The Republicans are projected to have taken 20.9% of the vote, which is predicted to result in the party winning between 80-100 seats.

The Socialists have an estimated 9% of the vote, leaving the party with between 30-40 seats.

The National Front is expected to take 13.1%, leaving it with between one and four seats, while Jean-Luc Mélenchon's far-left party is expected to claim between 10-20 seats after accounting for 11% of the vote.

Florian Philippot, the deputy chairman of the National Front, said his party was "disappointed" with the result.

"We've maybe been disappointed by the score and we have paid the price, I think, for a low turnout," he told reporters.

Why is this important for Macron?

The success of those parties, however, is likely to pale into insignificance should La Republique En Marche secure the mandate Macron requires to govern successfully.

Macron, who won the presidency by being a pro-European centrist, is hoping to carry out far-reaching reforms to overhaul the country's political system and economy.

France is suffering from high unemployment, a stagnant economy, and security worries. The government has also struggled to cope with immigration and integration.

But for him to be able to implement his reforms, he needs to be able to govern – and that means having a majority in Parliament.

This story was first published on CNN.com, "Macron's party on course for historic gains in French parliamentary election."