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Le Pen Calls Macron "Weak" On Terrorism; Polls Suggest Macron Is Frontrunner; Euro, Global Stocks Soar As Macron Advances; Trump: North Korea Is "Real Threat To The World"; Britain's UKIP Vows Burka Ban as Campaign Pledge; Exploited Workers Trapped on Brazilian Ranches; Le Pen Stepping Aside as National Front Leader. Aired 3-4p ET

Aired April 24, 2017 - 15:00   ET



HALA GORANI, CNN ANCHOR: Tonight, live from Paris, the race is on. Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen waste no time in getting on the campaign

trail. This hour, we will speak to a Macron spokesperson and a centrist overcome as lack of experience to reach the Elysee Palace.

And we get an international perspective. Will Le Pen ride a recent populist wave all the way to the French presidency? You are looking at

live images of the French capital this hour. It is just after 9:00 p.m., that's where the political landscape is taking shape behind me.

I'm Hala Gorani. We are live from Paris this hour. It is a special edition of THE WORLD RIGHT NOW.

Well, it is a windy evening here in Paris overlooking the Champs-Elysee and from here it's not a far -- essentially a very short walk frankly to the

Elysee Palace and the road to that palace has taken many twists and turns.

The final lap is no exception. In less than two weeks, France will hold one of its most dramatic elections ever when that completely bypasses the

political establishment.

The candidates are not wasting any time. They are trying to win over the voters. The far right leader, Marine Le Pen was quick on the attack

slamming the centrist newcomer, Emmanuel Macron, over his security policies. Listen.


MARINE LE PEN, FRENCH PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE (through translator): To draw their attention to important subjects including Islamist terrorism to which

the least we can say that Mr. Macron is weak on, because, he, the day after the terror attack, even indicated that he would not even going to implement

a program against terrorism in one night.


GORANI: Well, that was Le Pen. Macron himself was not so verbal. He actually observe a moment of silence as he laid a wreath to mark the 102nd

anniversary of the mass killing of Armenians, but last night, he was keying to reinforce his party's message.


EMMANUEL MACRON, FRENCH PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE (through translator): The challenge now is to put a total end to the system, which has failed to

solve our problems for more than 30 years.


GORANI: Well, Jim Bittermann is here with more on what to expect. This is going to be a very, very harsh battle not least because both opponents are

very diametrically opposed ideologically.

JIM BITTERMANN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely. The French will have a choice in front of them now. They are going to have to

pronounce themselves one way or another. You know, I was thinking today that people seemed even a little surprised.

Even though the opinion polls basically were accurate, what they said was going to happen happened on election day, but people seems surprised that

in fact, you know, for the first time since the birth of the fifth republic that in fact we have seen none other major party's president.

I mean, you've gotten used to this concept here of the alter (inaudible), which you alternate government from left to right, left to right.

GORANI: Like Democrats and Republicans.

BITTERMANN: Exactly. And now all of a sudden that whole model is out the window, and it's a whole ball game with fresh faces, well, Le Pen is not so

fresh, in any case, I think it's going to be -- the next two weeks are going to be very intense and probably very bitter campaign.

GORANI: The polls all suggest overwhelmingly that Emmanuel Macron is the favorite, and that French voters even if they don't support him will want

to reject Marine Le Pen and therefore, will vote for Macron in the runoff, and that being said, this may not be the right time to just kind of try to

coast to the finish line if you are a Macron supporter.

BITTERMANN: Absolutely not. I mean, we had this too many errors long away here and other elections elsewhere. And I think also, you know, Le Pen is

going to be very strong and very tough on issues that have appealed on the French security and the immigration and that sort of thing.

Europe is going to turn around Europe a lot. The one thing that could come out of nowhere, could change things, is if there were to be another

terrorist attack as we have seen in the last week, it could change the dynamic of the election campaign.

GORANI: All right. Jim Bitterman, our CNN senior international correspondent and covering elections in this country for decades. Thanks

so much for being here.

We spoke to the French voters to get their reaction to how the first round of voting went?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I went to vote for Emmanuel Macron yesterday. It is a great big message for Europe, and for our part of the world that the

populists are winning.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I am a bit disappointed. I would have preferred Melenchon to get through. He's stronger than Macron and Le

Pen, she's now my thing.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): My reaction is I think France is seriously divided and this is having a major impact. People don't know

where they staying anymore and they voted for big question marks.


[15:05:11]GORANI: Well, polls suggest Emmanuel Macron, obviously, as we mentioned is the frontrunner in this contest. His spokesperson, Mounir

Mahjoubi, joins me now. First of all, congratulations to your team. A year ago nobody would have guessed this outcome.

MOUNIR MAHJOUBI, SPOKESPERSON FOR EMMANUEL MACRON: Absolutely nobody. When we started we were a few people saying that we could change the

system. If we set at work, we might have a few people to join us. And one year after, we have 200,000 members in our organization, more than

200,000, and we have been first at the first round of this presidential election.

GORANI: But you can't relax, right? Because I mean, obviously, Marine Le Pen is a formidable competitor. She got a lot of support. Your candidate

in the end about 24 percent, he has to convince many people to join this movement as you call it.

MAHJOUBI: The only (inaudible) is the responsibility to win in two weeks, and to win in two weeks, we'll have to reunite the French people. We will

have to go over our movement and go over what was built in the last few months to be something bigger in a very short time.

GORANI: But what are the proposals? When Emmanuel Macron talks about unifying France, creating jobs, these things many have tried before him and

many have failed. France is a notoriously difficult country to reform. He doesn't have a party behind him. There are important legislative elections

in June. What is the strategy?

MAHJOUBI: The strategy to reform France is to change the way we do things, the way we see how the state has to govern, but also a way to completely

change the faces. We have to change the people who are in France for the last 20 years, and the last -- especially ties last five years.

It has been the same team and the same people and many men over 50 years deciding everything. We have an engagement for the next parliament

election. We would half of our members of parliament that will come from the civil society, and I am running for it.

GORANI: You're running for -- you're 33 years old and you are running for parliament.

MAHJOUBI: I am running for parliament, and half of the candidates will look like us.

GORANI: And I want to ask you a question because international people will say, and many international companies sometimes hesitate to invest money,

open businesses in France, because the labor market is rigid, because it's difficult to do business here because corporate taxes are high. How will

an Emmanuel Macron presidency get these reforms through when so many before him have tried and not succeeded?

MAHJOUBI: Because we are going to offer to French people, population a balance in what we believe is very important to the economy in the way we

will structure and make everything possible for the entrepreneurs. We believe in entrepreneur's value and in companies.

GORANI: I know that's what you believe in, but you have forces that will try to prevent that from happening or make it difficult, and he has no

experience your candidate, he is 39 years old and never been elected --

MAHJOUBI: Actually he has been a minister of economy, and we will be --

GORANI: Well, he has never ran a campaign. I mean, you know, compared to the other candidates obviously a lot less experience, which may have been

part of his appeal.

MAHJOUBI: It might have been part of his appeal, but you know, the way we did campaign is also that way we want to govern France when we will win, if

we win in two weeks, and imply people, listen to people, decide together, having flat organization, not having pyramidal organization. That is what

we have done for this campaign, and that is what we want to do for France, change the way we decide.

GORANI: Are you or do you liken -- did you borrow some of the strategies of -- for instance, Barack Obama in 2008, or where did the strategy come

from for this campaign?

MAHJOUBI: France and Europe has a long history of having the grassroots campaigns, and having people very involved in politics, but yes, the Obama

campaigns have been an example of listening to people and listening to the grassroots organization to magnet dynasties of the country and know what

are the pain concepts, we need to solve very urgently.

GORANI: Marine Le Pen has a lot of support in this country. If you take the votes of Jean Luc Melenchon, also a euro skeptic and with the populist

agenda, that is more than 40 percent of French voters. This is a big, big chunk of the electorate that is not at all likely to support Emmanuel

Macron. How do you reach out to them?

MAHJOUBI: You know, they might like us as well. We share something very strongly with Melenchon voters. We want to change everything that has been

in this country in terms of government organization.

GORANI: Right. So you want to embrace Europe, and continue with the big international organizations they are so skeptical of. It's almost opposite


MAHJOUBI: They are skeptical. And not a majority, but a vast amount of French people who have doubts about the necessity to have an open country,

and a strong Europe. So we can't arrive and say, OK, we will do the Europe as we said.

We want France to be a strong leader of Europe, but we can't have Europe as it is right now. French people and European people all over the country in

Europe have said in the last few years that this organization of Europe is not acceptable anymore.

[15:10:06]So if we want to be Europe, in any way a true Europe, we have to change Europe.

GORANI: And what is the big change that Europe needs? That Emmanuel Macron will try to push through if he is elected?

MAHJOUBI: A sense of responsibility, fiscal responsibility between countries, and a sense of more, an easier organization and flatter

organization and lighter European organization.

GORANI: Less bureaucratic?

MAHJOUBI: Less -- much less bureaucratic Europe because that's --

GORANI: And definitely no Frexit?

MAHJOUBI: No Frexit. We are absolutely against any type of Frexit, but we want another type of Europe.

GORANI: All right, Mounir Mahjoubi, thanks very much, spokesperson for Emmanuel Macron. You were leading the numeric -- what do you call it in

France, the big group --

MAHJOUBIU: Digital campaign, and I was the head of the National Digital Council.

GORANI: And you left that to join the campaign?

MAHJOUBI: Yes, because when you believe in the values of the people then it is much more important to your life.

GORANI: All right, well, thanks very much. We will hopefully be speaking in the next couple of weeks before round two.

Now, we talked a little bit about perhaps feeling confident ahead of the second round, but there is a very, very important battle ahead for the team

of Emmanuel Macron against Marine Le Pen.

Now this contest is being closely watched across all of Europe, especially given the wave of populism the continent has seen over the past few months.

Atika Shubert is in Berlin and has more reaction from the region.

ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Hala, what we have seen across the board here from German politicians is support for

French presidential candidate, Emmanuel Macron. We have heard from Chancellor Merkel's spokesperson but also her chief of staff, Peter

Altmeyer (ph), who put out a tweet saying, quote, "This shows France and Europe can work together, that the center is stronger than populist


Also we heard from opposition candidate, Martin Schultz, of the Social Democrats, he's called on French voters to come out for the second round

to, quote, "ensure no nationalist will become president."

What is significant about all of this is that it is really unprecedented for German politicians to come out after only the first round and very

heavily in favor of one candidate and urging French voters to go out and vote for Macron.

And this is precisely because of this very centrist pro-E.U. platform. This is exactly the kind of leader that senior politicians here are hoping

will become the next president of France.

And at the same time, of course, Germany is facing its own elections in September and so Chancellor Merkel, who is running again, of course, is

looking at this mindful that there is this very anti-establishment feeling among European voters.

But for somebody like Martin Schultz, the opposition candidate, is clearly encourage that a centrist candidate like this has done so well at least in

the first round. So it will be very interesting to see how this goes forward in the campaign into the second round -- Hala.

GORANI: Well, so you see it there, a sigh of relief from Berlin, Brussels, obviously because Emmanuel Macron is a euro enthusiast that has prompted

European leaders there to send some sort of message of support there through statements and the like.

As a result, by the way, the euro hit a five-month high against the U.S. dollar as Macron emerged the favorite for the presidency. Investors

breathed that sigh of relief as they avoided facing two Euro skeptic candidates in the runoff.

Paul La Monica has that angle from New York. So Paul, let's talk a little bit about this. So obviously, markets are betting on a Macron win here?

PAUL LA MONICA, CNN MONEY CORRESPONDENT: Yes, clearly, the investors are hoping that Macron is going beat Le Pen and that does mean that any fear of

a Frexit following the Brexit will no longer be realized and that you might have some stability in the E.U. and less of a populist surge with

politicians there.

Ironically enough, I think the Wall Street rally today is also a little bit about President Trump who has been, you know, Le Pen has compared herself

to, because of the hopes of tax the reform. He is going to have the tax plan later this week.

GORANI: Can you hear me?


GORANI: All right. And let's talk a little about the expectation could be over the next couple of weeks because this is the initial enthusiasm the

day after here.

LA MONICA: Yes, I think that is a great point the make. We have right now stocks surging today because the consensus is that Macron will win on

May 7th, but if Le Pen starts gaining in the polls, and as your guests before, and as you were pointing out to your guests before, what happens if

some of the other anti-establishment French voters all rally around Le Pen.

I think that could a problem for the global markets because they are quickly assuming she has no chance of winning on May 7th, and we have seen

with President Trump and Brexit that sometimes the unexpected becomes reality.

[15:15:13]GORANI: Yes, I am pretty sure a full start one way or another so will markets and currencies. Paul La Monica, thanks very much as always

live in New York.

Still to come this evening as two outsiders fight to be the next president of France, I will speak to "The New Yorker's" Lauren Collins about how the

world sees this dramatic election.


GORANI: It is not just European leaders keeping an eye on the presidential election here in France and Russia, the kremlin denied that it would

interfere with the race saying the government did not support one candidate over the other.

For more on the international reaction, I'm joined by Lauren Collins, "The New Yorker's" correspondent here in Paris. She's here with me now.

And Lauren, the kremlin is saying that obviously Marine Le Pen, though, is the one that traveled to Russia to meet with Vladimir Putin. But let's

talk a little bit about the campaign itself. It is looks much more like an American political spectacle than at any time in the past in this country.

LAUREN COLLINS, "THE NEW YORKER": Right. It's interesting. I mean, a lot of people have been drawing parallels between Trump and Le Pen. They are

not always structurally sound, but I think the idea that, for instance, Macron's campaign closely resembles, and in fact, is self-consciously

modeled to some extent on Obama's from 2008. It is a really good thing to talk about.

For one thing, Macron has had people out here in Paris and other parts of the country knocking on doors which has not really been done before in

France. I think that is something new here.

And I think his idea of saying, you know, his final note on Twitter to his supporters yesterday before the polls opened was it is all in your hands.

So I think --

GORANI: And it is a beautiful picture of himself in black and white on the phone with Barack Obama.

COLLINS: Right. I mean, there is a certain level of self-mythology there, but I think it's working in the sense that he is trying to offer something

positive, a sense of optimism, and a sense of hope. He said over and over again mine is the only, you know, the program, the only positive program on

offer in this election. I think that is the tone that they are trying to set.

GORANI: So another way in which this campaign was closer to an American, typical American campaign is where the debates and the primaries, and the

televised debates with all 11 candidates. The first one was probably the most dramatic when you have the top five contenders, but this, too, is

something new in France.

COLLINS: Well, I think I'm going to argue with you there and say the second one with all 11 candidates may have been the most dramatic. I

thought that topped any spectacle that even --

GORANI: Just the logistics of getting the 11 in with equal speaking time.

[15:20:03]COLLINS: Yes, you know, you had the candidates, Philippe Poutou of the new anti-capitalist party, who got up there in his t-shirt and

refused to have his picture taken with the other candidates.

But that's right, the debates and the primaries which have changed the electoral dynamic somewhat, and yes, I think some other things have made

this maybe a more American election, although I would like to think that of course.

GORANI: Yes, but I mean, it is in the age of the social media and the age of television and news, how does Marine Le Pen, who in the end obviously is

an anti-establishment candidate in the sense that her party is not part of the establishment, but she is from a very, very, I mean, long standing

political far right and extreme right dynasty in this country?

COLLINS: That is what interesting. I mean, remember, I was in Tolon (ph) in February at a Macron rally, and I went out into the market and I was

talking to people, and one of the guys said to many, well, everyone is asking, is Le Pen Trump, and he said, make sure you remember Le Pen is

Trump with a past.

I mean, this hasn't been a freak candidacy. This wasn't something that just happened. This is a 40-year -- you know, the culmination of a 40-year

campaign to put far right politics at the center of French political life and --

GORANI: And let's put this in context, she may not have scored as well as some polls suggested she would, but she still represents a fifth of the

French electorate today.

COLLINS: And over 20 percent I think was victory for her. I mean, the Front National has never -- you know, her father had 18 percent in 2002,

and that was considered an absolute breakthrough for him. So 20 percent, 21 percent may not be what, you know, she was hoping and dreaming for but -


GORANI: None of the best estimates suggested she could perhaps achieve. But lastly, a lot of people have said Macron is sort of the victory of the

center and the backlash against the backlash, but if you add Marine Le Pen and the other anti-establishment euro skeptic, anti-NATO candidates, you

are at 40 percent of the French population voting for one populist or another. That is a lot.

COLLINS: That's right. And you know that it is going to be, if you listen to the polls which were fairly accurate in the first round, Macron has a

good lead, but 40 percent of people wanting to get out of the E.U. and wanting to get out of the euro in France is a force to content with.

And you know, Melenchon, for example, of course, hasn't given his support to Macron. So there is going to be a lot of negotiation, wooing, and

fighting to be done in the next few weeks.

GORANI: I wonder how would Macron deal with a Trump?

COLLINS: I think it's a good question. I asked some of the people when I was doing my reporting, and they said, you know, he will be diplomatic and

he finds something to talk about with everyone.

GORANI: That is what some of the criticism he's facing, you are not exactly passionate one way or the other.

COLLINS: Exactly. Maybe the hologram quality that some of his opponents have knocked him for would come in handy in an encounter with Trump.

GORANI: Yes, it's going to be interesting. Now that said, if Marine Le Pen losses and that's the expectation, how do you unify a country where

such a big chunk of the electorate still supported her and thought she was the best choice because they're certainly not going to support Macron?

COLLINS: I don't know. I think (inaudible) obviously we have the legislative elections coming up in June. In terms of actually governing

the country, that is as big of a test as the presidential election will be.

I was also really surprised talking to people in Macron's camp, I mean, you know, that's been the big question mark all along really is can he get a

majority, and I asked them of that.

And they said absolutely, the French people have always delivered one to their president. So there seemed to be a lot of confidence there, but I

think it is an open question.

GORANI: Well, he doesn't have a party right now. I mean, he has a movement. He doesn't really have a party. He still has to somehow achieve

a parliamentary majority to govern, and the same would apply to Marine Le Pen, by the way, if she is elected.

COLLINS: Right. I mean, she does not have a better chance at all of doing that, but that is why the selection is so unusual is we are looking at two

big unknowns that's exciting in ways, but it is also staring into the void.

GORANI: And not just in France, all around -- in so many western democracies today is a pivotal time. I mean, establishment parties are

essentially on life support, and the socialists achieved in the end less than 7 percent in this country.


GORANI: And that is the party of the president.

COLLINS: Right. I think we can fairly say that the socialist party maybe dead after this election in France.

GORANI: All right, Lauren Collins, thanks very much of "The New Yorker."

Donald Trump says the world needs to tear off the blinders and face the threat from North Korea head on. We will see how he is working on several

fronts to rein in he says Pyongyang's nuclear program.

[15:25:09]Also ahead, he would be the youngest president in French history. She would to be the first woman. Supporters of Emmanuel Macron, Marine Le

Pen join me for a debate coming up. Stay with us.


GORANI: Welcome back. We are live in Paris once again and much more on the French presidential election in just a moment, but first a look at

today's other major headlines.

North Korea has detained an American citizen and it is unclear why Kim Sung Duk also known as Tony Kim had been teaching at a university in Pyongyang.

He was about to head home when he was taken into custody at the airport.

Donald Trump says the world must wake up to the threat posed by North Korea and take action now. He is pressuring the regional powers and the United

Nations to do more to rein in Pyongyang's nuclear program. Mr. Trump phoned the leaders of China and Japan then spoke with U.N. Security Council

ambassadors. Today, Mr. Trump urged the U.N. to impose new sanctions on Pyongyang.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: This is a real threat to the world. Whether we want to talk about it or not. North Korea

is a big world problem and it's a problem we have to finally solve. People put blindfolds on for decades, and now it is time to solve the problem.


GORANI: Let's bring in the CNN senior diplomatic correspondent, Michelle Kosinski. She is live at the State Department -- Michelle.

MICHELLE KOSINSKI, CNN SENIOR DIPLOMATIC CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Hala. Right. We have really seen the rhetoric, the pace of North Korea's provocations

pick up over the last several weeks. Now North Korea is threatening to strike a U.S. aircraft carrier with a single strike, and take out everyone

on board.

I mean, some of things that are coming out of their state media are really shocking, the super-heated rhetoric. They are also threatening once again

that they have a weapon that would be able to hit mainland United States.

U.S. officials right now don't believe that they have that capability fully, but that they are working on it. And that is why, when they are

talking about the level and the pace of these provocations, they say that it is been getting worse, and that's why there is such urgency right now.

Now, of course, we have an American professor detained in North Korea, here is some of what the U.S. ambassador to the U.N., Nikki Haley had to say

about that.


NIKKI HALEY, U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE UNITED NATIONS: I think it's absolutely a bargaining chip. I think that is what their intentions are.

Whether that is the case or not is something totally different.

What we are dealing with is a leader who is flailing right now, and I think what he is trying to do is show his citizens that he has muscle whether it

is through his rhetoric or whether through his actions.

[15:30:05] What we have said from the beginning, and what I'll continue to say is, the United States is not looking for a fight, so don't give us a

reason to have one.


KOSINSKI: Of course, some of what we've been hearing from U.S. officials over the last month or two has been more intensified as well, things like

openly talking about the military possibility, saying nothing is off of the table, talking about the possibility of the U.S. going it alone in

responding to North Korea. But as things heat up, where we see these provocations, what we are hearing from the United States in statements are

more based on diplomacy.

You heard the President today talking about more sanctions. The State Department is talking about starting with existing sanctions and trying to

get other countries, especially China, to more fully enforce those sanctions. And in the statements that they've been putting out, they're

talking about urging North Korea to change course and consider serious talks.

I mean, they want to see a real change in North Korea's actions first, but they're, again, bringing up the possibility of sitting down with North

Korea if it makes those changes in its behavior. The State Department emphasizing international partners and the use of sanctions to try to

change behavior.

Of course, those sanctions have been in effect for more than a year, those sweeping U.N. sanctions that were unprecedented. And, of course, we

haven't seen a change in North Korea's behavior. So that is where we are now, as U.S. officials try to figure out with international partners how to

do more so that something does change, Hala.

GORANI: Yes. All right. Michelle Kosinski, at the State Department, thanks very much.

Let's take a look at what Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen stand for before we get to a discussion between two of their supporters.

All right, now, we obviously know that Emmanuel Macron wants to keep France inside the European Union. He wants to cut corporate taxes and increase

public investment. He has also promised to hire an extra 10,000 police officers.

Marine Le Pen, for her part, wants to ditch the euro. She promises a referendum on E.U. membership or Frexit. She would slash immigration. She

has called for all Islamist mosques in France to be closed.

This gives you kind of a broad-brush idea of the two opposing program. Joining me now is a Macron supporter, Clemence Vignal-Lambret, and Le Pen

supporter, Mikael Sala. Thanks to both of you for being with us.

I'll start with you since your candidate came in first. It looks like about 24 percent of the vote. Why do you think that French voters should

vote for Macron and not, in the runoff, for Marine Le Pen? What is the main reason?

CLEMENCE VIGNAL-LAMBRET, EMMANUEL MACRON SUPPORTER: Well, first of all, I'm absolutely thrilled that we've reached 24 percent. It was unimaginable

one year ago. I think they should choose Emmanuel Macron for two reasons. One is he has been able to unite people, to unify people. He has a very

assembling speech, and he proved this again yesterday night.

And second of all, I think he has understood what a president should be, someone who is bold to give a direction but also to delegate and to control

what is being done.

GORANI: Mikael Sala, you obviously support Marine Le Pen. Why?

MIKAEL SALA, MARINE LE PEN SUPPORTER: Why I do support Marine Le Pen? Because I'm a small business owner. You know, in this country, like just

in many countries in the world including America, small businesses do create jobs. And small businesses have had to suffer massively from the

European Union, which has created an unfair competitive advantage in terms of wages, in terms of welfare state, and monetary terms.

And Emmanuel Macron is the proponent of a global world where a country's borders disappear. And that's created 7 million unemployed in this country


GORANI: You blame Europe for unemployment in France?

SALA: No, I blame, in part, Europe because you know and I know that the Euro is not a monetary or financial creation. It's a political creation

intended to create convergence in fiscal wages and welfare state terms among economies who are divergent. And it didn't work. It just produced

massive unemployment and very low growth, and we want the break away from that.

GORANI: How do you respond to that because, as far as Mikael is concerned, his major motivator here is small business interests?

SALA: It's jobs. It's creating jobs.

GORANI: And creating jobs.

VIGNAL-LAMBRET: Well, first off, I would start by saying that, absolutely, I agree that small companies create jobs, but where I don't agree is the

responsibility imputed to European Union. It's not true that Emmanuel Macron wants to have a borderless world. He wants a European Union that


It's true that there is a lot of problems today in European Union, and he intends to correct that. He wants a stronger Europe, a different Europe,

that protects the people.

[15:35:06] GORANI: Yes. But, obviously, the big themes that are brought up by the candidate you support, immigration, closing Islamist mosques, all

those things have been termed, in some cases have been called, racist policies, anti-immigration, and anti-Muslim proposals.

SALA: Let me tell you one thing.

GORANI: You've heard that obviously?

SALA: Yes, sure and it doesn't stick. It doesn't make any sense. Let me tell you one thing, we are on Avenue de Champs-Elysees. Three days ago, a

policeman was gunned down some sort of crazy assassin, right? So we have a major problem. And to leave it up to Greece which is being ruined by the

Euro, to leave it up to Italy which is totally overwhelmed by migrants flowing in, to leave the borders the European --

GORANI: But this man was born in France, so I don't think you leave it up to Greece or --

SALA: No, what I'm saying is that --


SALA: Macron's proposal to strengthen Europe doesn't make sense because at the borders of Europe, countries have been overwhelmed by massive

immigration. And what Emmanuel Macron says, he went to Berlin for a job interview with Angela Merkel and he congratulated her for welcoming 1.5

million migrants who could, tomorrow, come over to France where we don't have jobs to offer them anymore. We just can't afford them, even the more

competitive people.

GORANI: Clemence, Mikael is saying, look, you can't leave it up to the countries on the edge of Europe to control immigration. They're broke,

they don't have the power to do so, and you're candidate is essentially supporting that idea.

VIGNAL-LAMBRET: Well, I would like to say that I'm not a spokesperson for Emmanuel Macron, so I will speak only from my perspective here. I think

it's a bit easy to blame it all on the bordering countries. It is true we cannot leave it alone to Italy or to Greece. It is our responsibility as a

driving force of the European Union to strengthen the borders.

European Union, as has been said, was envisioned as a political and economic union most of all. I don't think the immigration situation was

the same as today when it was created. So the world is change, we need to change with that. And that is no reason to dismiss the European Union.

GORANI: No. And what about this idea of Islamization? This is a big, big topic that's brought up time and time again by Marine Le Pen and the

National Front. Do you think this is an issue in France? Is this something that you're concerned with, that somehow this radicalization is

threatening the very identity of your country?

VIGNAL-LAMBRET: That's a complicated question. What's most worrying, I think, is extremism. And I don't want to go down the road of identity

being challenged by religion. I think our role is to make sure the laws of the republic are being respected. There is a problem. Once again, there

is need to face it, but it's too easy to just find a culprit and not do anything about it.

GORANI: Do you think -- go ahead. Go ahead.

SALA: Listen.


SALA: You girls, if want to go to a cafe in the northern suburb of Souvans -- as you are now, you go to a cafe -- you will face a guy who will tell

you, you've got nothing to do here because, here, it's like in Nigeria, women are not allowed.

GORANI: Well --

SALA: Is this the country I want? No. And Marine Le Pen --

GORANI: I haven't been called a girl in a long time.


GORANI: And I can tell you, there's no cafe I won't go to where someone's going to stare me down and intimidate me. Trust me on that one. Let me --

SALA: Let's go check Souvans and you'll see what happens.

GORANI: Right.

SALA: And this is what our Marine Le Pen stands for --

GORANI: Well, I'll be fine, thank you very much. But let me ask you about --

SALA: -- defending women against discrimination (ph).

GORANI: Let me ask you about Marine Le Pen. Is she, in your opinion, a French Donald Trump, do you think? Because that's what we've heard.

SALA: Well, they've got one thing in common, patriotism. And they've got another thing in common, Marine Le Pen aims to make this country great

again, and she aims to achieve this by making it grow again.


SALA: This is the whole purpose of her, so --

GORANI: Is patriotism just the sort of the value only of the Le Pen supporters? Can you not be a Macron supporter and patriotic?

VIGNAL-LAMBRET: Yes, I want to react on that because I think we cannot promote patriotism when the legacy of the National Front is xenophobia and

racism. We know that, behind the stage, there are still hardline nationalists. And I think that real patriotism is what Macron is actually

proposing. So the idea that patriotism belongs to the National Front, I thinks, is just promoting devalued patriotism.

GORANI: All right. We're going to leave it there. Thanks to both of you for joining me.

SALA: Merci.

GORANI: Clemence Vignal-Lambret, who has voted and supported Emmanuel Macron.


GORANI: Mikael Sala who is a Le Pen supporter. Two more weeks, we'll know who the President of France is. Whoever it is, it will be a new chapter.

Thanks to both of you.

[15:39:55] Now, Britain is also gearing up for an election. And the nationalist U.K. party, the U.K. Independence Party, is now campaigning on

a controversial new pledge. It is vowing to ban burkas in public to win this special election in June. UKIP's deputy leader explained why today.


PETER WHITTLE, DEPUTY LEADER, U.K. INDEPENDENCE PARTY: Face coverings such as the Islamic veil are a deliberate barrier to integration. They say,

don't speak to me, I will not speak to you.

They are, furthermore, a potent symbol of the female oppression against which many women in Islamic countries have fought and continue the fight.

And in many contexts, of course, too, they also constitute an increasingly serious security risk.

UKIP proposes that the time has come to outlaw them.


GORANI: Well, how is that going over on the streets of London? Here's a sampling of opinion.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think that there's more important issues and pressing issues that people are actually concerned about, like security,

economic and political issues. These are, you know, private issues that people can deal with, so I don't think it's the greatest concern for

Britain right now, considering Brexit and everything.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think it's like a strong-arming kind of politics, where you just want to kind of sound tough and itchy and appeal to that

marginal part of the electorate that finds that sort of thing impressive. I don't think it will help immigration or relations between different


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't understand because no one's targeting Sikhs when they wear their turbans, you know. Men wear turbans, so why -- we're

basically the same thing. It says we are Muslims and we are wearing a headscarf. There is no difference, whatsoever. We are both covering our

heads, so why target only Muslims?


GORANI: All right. Questions on the streets of London, reaction to this proposal. Many themes you see both in the U.K. and in France intersecting

and overlapping, in some cases.

This is THE WORLD RIGHT NOW. Coming up, CNN joins the government forces in Brazil trying to help families forced to live in squalid conditions. We'll

bring you that story coming up.


GORANI: CNN's "Freedom Project" heads to Brazil as we look at the tragedy of modern-day slavery around the world. Now, we're focusing on that


Now, some people are trapped in slave-like conditions on cattle ranches in the Amazon rainforests. Shasta Darlington joined a government unit trying

to end some of the misery of families forced to live in terrible conditions. Take a look at our report.


[15:45:00] SHASTA DARLINGTON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Barreling down on their target, an eight-car convoy speeds along the back roads of

Brazil's cattle country, only recently carved out of the vast Amazon rainforest. This, one of just four mobile units cracking down on labor

exploitation across the country.

We've got 25 kilometers ahead of a pretty rough dirt road. We're looking for this ranch after they got tips.

On this day, they get sent in different directions. But the info is old, workers have moved on, and they come up empty handed.

Andre Wagner, in charge of this latest operation in northern Tocantins state, says exploitation is ingrained in Brazil's lawless agricultural


ANDRE WAGNER, MOBILE UNIT COORDINATOR, BRAZIL MINISTRY OF LABOR AND EMPLOYMENT (through translator): You'll see somebody working in degrading

conditions, with an exhausting work schedule, eating one meal a day, while they don't receive any form of salary or very small salary because their

food and tools are discounted.

DARLINGTON: Days like this make it all worthwhile.

WAGNER (through translator): Today, we are leaving to inspect a complaint we received 15 days ago. It's very recent so there is a very high chance

that we will still find the conditions described in the complaint.

DARLINGTON: In fact, the task force finds something that shocks even veteran inspectors. A family of seven workers who say they haven't

received any money for two years, living literally like animals.

Maria Dalva shows us the hammocks slung in the corral where workers sleep and the outdoor spigot where they bathe.

MARIA DALVA SOUSA GOUVEA, RANCH WORKER (through translator): This is the bathroom where we wash cloths. In the bushes is where we relieve


DARLINGTON: Maria Dalva does the cooking and cleaning for workers on the ranch, sharing a shack with her husband and toddler son.

DALVA (through translator): Nobody deserves this. This mud. Only rats sleep like this. I can't sleep with all of the noise the rats make.

DARLINGTON: Marcelo Goncalves Campos, one of the Labor Ministry inspectors on the team, interviews workers.


inspector for almost 20 years, and this is really one of the worst.

DARLINGTON: Luis Cardoso da Silva, or Sir Luis, is the patriarch of the family. He says they had to buy their own tools. And instead of paying

salaries, he says the ranch owner paid them in food and accused them of owing him money.

LUIS CARDOSO DA SILVA, RANCH WORKER (through translator): We always have hope that it will get better. We'll have a better life, but it just gets

worse. And then the point comes that you can't leave because you owe money for the food he has given you. You have debts.

DARLINGTON: He tells me he was afraid.

DA SILVA (through translator): He could do anything to us. He is a mean guy.

DARLINGTON: The ranch owner is nowhere to be found and doesn't answer his phone. That makes it hard for the task force to negotiate an immediate

payout. For them, the work is just beginning. They log hours of interviews and investigate assets, evidence used to pressure for financial

compensation, which they say often ends up at about $2,000. But when the case is strong, it can be 10 times that.

More than 50,000 workers have been rescued from what Brazil defines as slave-like conditions since the mobile units were created in 1995. Sir

Luis now among them. But today, Wagner isn't completely satisfied.

WAGNER (through translator): It's possible Mr. Luis won't return to these working conditions, but it is also possible he will. Given his age and his

limited professional qualifications, he will continue to be a potential victim of slave labor.

DARLINGTON: Sir Luis and his family pack up the few valuable items they can claim after two years of grinding work on the ranch and head to an

uncertain freedom back in the town they started in.

[15:49:48] Shasta Darlington, CNN, Arapoema, Brazil.


GORANI: We'll be right back on CNN. Stay with us. A lot more ahead.


GORANI: Well, we've been hearing this hour that Marine Le Pen is stepping aside as leader of the National Front, her own party. Jim Bittermann is

here with me to explain. She's been giving an interview to the national broadcaster in the last few minutes.

JIM BITTERMANN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: In France 2. And I was listening to it as you were on the air, so I'm sorry I missed your

program tonight.

GORANI: That's all right. I missed the interview. This way, you could show me in.

BITTERMANN: In any case, she said she is stepping aside. She's going to take a leave of absence because she is above partisan politics. What she

is interested in for France as a patriot is far above partisan politics, so she's no longer going to be in charge of the party at least for now.

GORANI: If you're running for president, you're not above politics. Let's be honest.


BITTERMANN: Absolutely. Absolutely.


BITTERMANN: She also said it's totally do-able for her to beat Macron. She said there's been a lot of fog around his positions, but now that's all

going to end. The fog is going to be cleared because she is going to be face-a-face, we mean in front, confronting, directly, Macron on his


GORANI: Will we have a televised debate? We were speaking with a "New Yorker" correspondent, Lauren Collins, earlier how French politics has

become Americanized in some ways with primaries and the T.V. debates. Will we see a face-a-face between the two candidates?

BITTERMANN: I don't know that it's been confirmed yet, so there certainly has been a lot of talk around the television channels and whatnot that it's

going to happen. So I think it probably will happen.

GORANI: OK. And then that is going to be --

BITTERMANN: That will require work.

GORANI: -- just like watching -- this will probably be the most important political duel in French politics in recent memory.

BITTERMANN: Yes, absolutely. No, I think it would be something -- you know, I can see that Le Pen is obviously going to for the gut on this. She

is really going to for the broke, and, you know, she said she wasn't offended at all and wasn't deceived at all about her score yesterday in the

election campaign because there are some polls and some stories written about how she should have done better, and she would be not happy with the

result. She said she was fine with it. She said it was great. And she did better than her father.

GORANI: Right, she did better than her father. Her father was in 2002, that big shock, the first round of finalists. That being said, it is less

the 20 percent than what some polls had predicted. Now, for all the, I imagine, champagne corks popping in Brussels and Berlin over Macron's first

race finish, he has many weaknesses, Emmanuel Macron.


GORANI: First of all, his supporter base is less passionate than Le Pen's. Secondly, some said his victory speech was sort of a little diffused, not

too passionate, that this is where we're starting to see that he may not be up to it.

BITTERMANN: Yes. And I'm sure he denied and France 2 was saying that, you know, he has a violent campaign, violent politics against some very French

things, up against the social system, that he wants to allow massive immigration to the country, and deregulation that's going to be harmful to

the model, so she really is going to go after him.

[15:55:09] And she said that he is not a patriot because she cited this quote that he had about the war crimes that were committed in Algeria.

This was something that Macron said during the campaign. Of course, among his followers, that would be upsetting.

GORANI: Saying that the French colonial rulers, you know, that they may have been guilty perhaps of committing war crimes during the colonial time,

which angered some people here. But we're starting to see her strategy define itself now, that she's going to go after.

The patriot line is an interesting one because we have this panel, a man who supported Le Pen and a young lady who supported Macron. And we hear

that theme come up again and again and again, that the far right leader's party is the one of patriots. Obviously, that is something that the others


BITTERMANN: Yes, of course. And I think that will be something that they'll definitely push back on because it's hard to say that someone who

served the government as a minister and whatnot is not a patriot.

GORANI: Yes. Yes.

BITTERMANN: And also, what do they say about patriotism being the cloak of liars and fools? That they always hide behind patriotism. So I think it

is something that we'll see them push back on, I am sure, very hard.

GORANI: And this is such an important election because it will define France for many years to come, possibly a generation to come. And

certainly, it will have an impact on Europe because either Europe stays whole, stays strong, or in the event of a Le Pen win, we're looking at

possibly the end of this political project.

BITTERMANN: She was confronted with a little tweet this evening from her second-in-command at the Front National, who had said that this will be the

end -- and had a picture of the European flag, so this will be the end of that dishrag, the European flag.

GORANI: All right. Well, Macron was giving a victory speech in front of that dishrag as what she calls it. She refused to do an interview with it

in the frame.

We'll see. Two very, very different candidates and an exciting two weeks ahead. We'll be covering it with you, Jim and Melissa and the rest of our

team here. You can check out Facebook page, by the way,, for the latest.

That's it for me from Paris. Thanks for watching. Stay with CNN. "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS" is next. Goodbye from us.


PAULA NEWTON, CNN ANCHOR: The weather may have been grim here in New York, but my goodness, the markets did not disappoint. It's Monday, April 24th.