Emmanuel Macron

Emmanuel Macron is the president of France and one of the most influential European leaders. Elected in 2017 at age 39, Macron is the youngest president in the history of France since Napoleon Bonaparte. From 2014 to 2016, he served as the Minister of Economics, Industry, and Digital affairs. He was also the first person in the history of the current French Republic to be elected president without support from socialists due to his centrist views. Macron is the first French president to win reelection in over two decades.

Before his political ascent, Macron was a civil servant for the Inspectorate General of Finances and an investment bank for Rothschild & Co. In 2012, Macron was one of the closest confidantes of former French President Francois Hollande after being appointed deputy-general. Macron resigned from the position in 2016 to launch his presidential campaign, promoting centrist economic policies and advocating for the European Union.

He went toe-to-toe against French nationalist and anti-EU politician Marine Le Pen, defeating her with 66.1% of the vote for the presidency. Macron's election came on the heels of Britain's vote to leave the EU, the election of Donald Trump, and the rise of nationalist right-wing political parties across Europe.

Throughout his time in office, Macron sought to reform France's pension and labor laws and implement fuel taxes. As a result, France's left-wing has opposed his efforts through various protests and by siding with conservative opposition in Parliament. In the build-up to the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, Macron sought to de-escalate the situation through discussions with Russian President Vladimir Putin. At one point, Macron claimed Putin had personally vowed not to invade Ukraine. However, when the invasion started, Macron joined the rest of Europe in denouncing Russia's actions while providing Ukraine with military and economic support.