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Ursula von der Leyen in pole position as she tries to build majority to keep job

Macron’s bombshell adds uncertainty to the race to be European Commission president, and the incumbent will need to look left or right for support

Ursula von der Leyen has begun trying to craft a majority for a second term as European Commission president, after major gains for the far right that are likely to mean a less stable European parliament.

Von der Leyen, a German Christian Democrat, was jubilant after her European People’s party (EPP) secured 186 of the 720 seats in the European elections, maintaining its 25-year hold as the largest group and leaving her a narrow path to a second term.

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