French far-right National Front Party leader Marine Le Pen leaves after a press conference at party headquarters, Sunday, March 29, 2015, in Nanterre, western Paris, France.
Abandoning the National Front is likely a desperate attempt by Le Pen to break with the party's extremist past, which stands between her and anti-globalist French voters who aren't xenophobic.
Le Pen, who won 21.5 percent of the vote in the first round of the elections Sunday, on Tuesday made the statement on halal slaughter. Far-right expert Nonna Mayer at Sciences Po university said a Le Pen victory was not impossible, "but it seems unlikely that she will carry the second round".
"Now on the way to a vigorous second round, I am hoping for a president Le Pen", said Wilders, whose party produced a disappointing result in the Dutch elections earlier this year.
French populist Marine Le Pen's hope of winning the presidential election comes down to how many voters stay home on election day.
"I'm more or less surprised, rather relieved", said Victoire Gonzalez, one of the hundred or so people who gathered at the Union Francaise to watch the results.
Both candidates now will start two weeks of frenzied campaigning in which Le Pen is likely to focus on casting Macron as "weak" on terror.
While the Brexit vote and Presidential election were neck-and-neck in the polls in the lead-up to the vote, polls in France - which called the first round very well - have Macron way ahead for the second round and it really does look like his race to lose.
Those are "two clear offers that come face to face", Macron said on French public television. Macron has broken with France's traditional left or right political leadership to run as an independent and promised to invest in public infrastructure and modernize France's workforce.
"We cannot underestimate the mobilization required to ensure that Macron also wins the second round". "I'm one who admires her love of her country, her love of French culture, the French language, the things that the French have to be proud of".
France must reject Le Pen, again.
"I think her campaign was too laid-back", Le Pen told RTL Radio.
But Ms Le Pen is unlikely to go down without a fight.
Meanwhile, Le Pen was having selfies taken with workers outside a factory a few miles away.