Daughter succeeds dad at French far-right party

By ASSOCIATED PRESS
January 17, 2011 01:15

 
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TOURS, France — France's far-right National Front party elected the daughter of its founder, Jean-Marie Le Pen, as its new leader Sunday, who says she wants to broaden the appeal of a party known best for its anti-immigration, anti-Islam platform.

Le Pen, who has been convicted for minimizing the Holocaust, left the leadership of the party he created 38 years ago by dropping an anti-Semitic reference about a journalist at a weekend party gathering.

Marine Le Pen, 42, won slightly more than two-thirds of the vote in an election at a National Front convention in the central city of Tours — easily beating the other candidate, longtime party No. 2 Bruno Gollnisch.

Her victory, which had been expected, means she is likely to represent the party in the 2012 presidential race. Her father already said he wouldn't run after five losing bids — and a shockingly strong one nine years ago, when he qualified for the runoff against incumbent Jacques Chirac.

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