Barack Obama Backs Macron In Dramatic Intervention

4 May 2017, 15:30 | Updated: 28 October 2019, 15:26

Former US President Barack Obama has made a dramatic intervention in the French election, trying to rally support for Emmanuel Macron ahead of his face-off with Marine Le Pen.

Although polls show Macron has a lead of up to 20 points, Obama has urged French voters to turn out and back the centrist candidate against his far right opponent.

Obama said the election was too important for him to do nothing.

"I'm not planning on getting involved in many elections...but the success of France matters to the entire world," says Obama, who says Macron "appeals to people's hopes and not their fears.

"I want all of my friends in France to know how much I am rooting for your success."

Obama ends with a call to arms for Macron supporters: "Vive la France!"

But reaction to the intervention has been mixed: