Not a good day for Leftists in voting
Voting took place in France and Venezuela, and the Socialist ruling parties took a beating.
Paris (AFP) - France's far-right National Front (FN) saw record gains in the first round of regional polls, held under a state of emergency just three weeks after Islamic extremists killed 130 people in Paris.
Despite the strong result, it faces an uphill battle to clinch a run-off vote next week after Socialists withdrew candidates in an attempt to block it from power.
The FN came first with around 28 percent of the vote nationwide and topped the list in at least six of 13 regions, according to final estimates from the interior ministry.
CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Venezuela's opposition won control of the National Assembly by a landslide on Sunday, delivering a major setback to the ruling party and altering the balance of power after 17 years of socialist rule.
The opposition won at least 99 seats in the 167-seat legislature, National Electoral Council President Tibisay Lucena announced after midnight. The socialist party won 46 seats and the remaining races have not yet been decided.
The streets of the Venezuelan capital of Caracas broke out in shouts of joy and fireworks after the partial results were announced. Opposition leaders had earlier claimed they won but gave no indication of the margin.
Within seconds of the results being announced, President Nicolas Maduro took to the airwaves to recognize the opposition's win, saying that despite an adverse result Venezuela's democracy and constitution had triumphed. But he recalled the long history of coups in Latin America and blamed what he called a "circumstantial" loss on opponents he said have been conspiring to destabilize his socialist revolution.