"The reality is that “big change” is likely to come with or without Mélenchon: For the first time in the history of the Fifth Republic, neither the Socialists nor the Republicans — the vaguely center-left and center-right parties, respectively, that have governed France since 1958 — are likely to triumph at the ballot box. The contest will probably be a face-off between political outsiders: the independent Macron, the far-right Le Pen and, possibly, the communist Mélenchon.
Despite their ideological opposition, there are certain similarities between the platforms of Le Pen and Mélenchon. Both favor versions of economic protectionism to bolster a strong French state, and both would ultimately like to see France exit the E.U. — albeit for different reasons. Le Pen sees Europe as a threat to France’s sovereignty and national identity; Mélenchon views Europe as an oppressive neoliberal regime that has forgotten the poorest members of society."