The second round of the regional elections in France saw the Front National held up as it searches for a position of political power, but for how long?
At present it seems the only tactic being adopted by the Socialists and the Republicans is to plead to people to vote against Marine Le Pen and the Front National, instead of giving people something to actually vote for.
Surely one day such pleading will fall upon deaf ears, and if the political elite are shocked this morning after such a close shave, what state will they be in if their horse-trading fails to work next time?
Here is a collection of news stories to let you get up to speed on the result, as well as the chance to check the official results for your own commune.
BBC: French far right National Front routed in key vote
France's far-right National Front (FN) has failed to win a single region in the second round of municipal elections.
The party was beaten into third place, despite leading in six of 13 regions in the first round of voting on 6 December.
Nicolas Sarkozy's centre-right Republicans finished ahead of the ruling Socialists.
Acknowledging defeat, FN leader Marine Le Pen pledged to keep fighting.
The Guardian: Front National held back in France – but its trajectory is on the up
The election night mood in France was one of grim introspection.
Even if the rising tide of the far right Front National (FN) had been held back – temporarily at least – by tactical voting and a leap in turnout, the lessons were clear to see. The nationalist, anti-immigration, anti-European party was here to stay.
There were no winners in an election that consisted of establishment parties running around at the last minute trying desperately to outwit what they warned was a racist, xenophobic, Islamophobic and overwhelmingly dangerous party.
Politico: 5 takeaways from the elections in France
The National Front failed on Sunday to convince voters to let it run any French region, even though the far-right party’s candidates together gathered more votes than leader Marine Le Pen received in her 2012 presidential run.
Both mainstream parties, the conservative Les Républicains led by former president Nicolas Sarkozy, and sitting President François Hollande‘s Socialists, expressed relief at the failure of the National Front — and claimed responsibility for making it possible.
Both parties’ leaders also chose to shun the victory speeches customary on election nights, and warned that much remains to be done to address the problems that enabled the National Front’s rise — from mass unemployment to security and terrorism fears.
Elections régionales : les résultats
Le second tour des élections régionales 2015 a eu lieu le dimanche 13 décembre.
Front National’s Marine Le Pen: ‘This is a split between the globalists and the patriots’