WASHINGTON - Three days before French voters elect the next president of their country, front-runner Emmanuel Macron received support from former U.S. president Barack Obama.
In a video message posted Thursday on Macron’s Twitter account, Obama said he was endorsing the centrist candidate “because of how important this election is.’’
“I have admired the campaign that Emmanuel Macron has run. He has stood up for liberal values,” Obama said. “He put forward the vision for the important role that France plays in Europe and around the world. And he has committed to a better future for French people.’’
Obama ended his message in French with the words “En Marche,” the name of Macron’s political movement, and “Vive La France.’’ Obama remains popular in France.
U.S. President Donald Trump has praised Macron’s opponent, far-right candidate Marine Le Pen, although he has not explicitly endorsed her.
“She’s the strongest on borders, and she’s the strongest on what’s been going on in France,’’ Trump said in an April 21 interview with The Associated Press. “Whoever is the toughest on radical Islamic terrorism, and whoever is the toughest at the borders, will do well in the election,’’ Trump said.
Obama has mostly stayed in the background in American politics since Trump moved into the White House.