Jean-Marie Le Pen,
far-right French politician, shocked the world in April with his second-place finish in the first round of France's presidential election. He took 17% of the vote, eliminating Lionel Jospin, the Socialist prime minister, who tallied 16%. Jospin, stunned by the result, announced that he was retiring from politics and threw his support behind incumbent President Jacques Chirac, who led the group of 16 candidates with 20% of the vote. Chirac won the final round in a landslide. Le Pen's party, the right-wing, anti-immigrant National Front party, failed to win any seats in parliament.