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Le Pen's niece says FN failed to convince voters on euro

Marion Marechal-Le Pen, French National Front political party deputy, attends a political rally as she campaigns for Marine Le Pen, French National Front (FN) political party leader and candidate for the French 2017 presidential election, in Marseille, France, April 19, 2017. REUTERS/Robert Pratta

PARIS (Reuters) - Marine Le Pen’s niece Marion Marechal-Le Pen, a National Front lawmaker, on Sunday said her aunt’s softening of the party position on the euro came late in the presidential election campaign and was not well understood by French voters.

Ditching the euro is one of Le Pen’s key policies but a majority of voters oppose it. Over the past days Le Pen had said it wasn’t a pre-condition to her economic plans and the timetable could be extended, but stuck to her wish to return to the French franc.

“There are clearly lessons to be learnt,” Marechal-Le Pen said on France 2 television.

“Marine Le Pen was right to say, even if that came late, that leaving the euro was not a pre-condition to all our economic policies and that she would hold a referendum.”

She added: “We clearly didn’t manage to get this election to be understood as a referendum for or against France, a referendum for or against immigration ... for or against the European Union as we know it.”

Reporting by Ingrid Melander and Simon Carraud; Editing by Leigh Thomas