Sarah Palin has admitted to having a "political crush" on far-right French politician Marion Marechal-Le Pen, who she said was a reminder of Joan of Arc.
Writing for the right-wing website Breitbart, the former Republican vice-presidential candidate heaped praise on the young National Front (FN) deputy just as her anti-immigrant party went down in defeat in the second round of regional elections in France.
"Marion Marechal-Le Pen is the new deserved 'it girl' of French politics and a clear voice of courage and common sense in a country and continent in need of both," she wrote.
Marechal-Le Pen is a granddaughter of Jean-Marie Le Pen, founder of the FN, and the latest generation of the political family to lead the campaign against immigrants and multiculturalism in France.
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She was elected to the National Assembly at the age of 22 in 2012, making her the youngest MP in modern French history.
However, she had to taste disappointment on Monday when the FN failed to win control of any of France's regions and she came second in Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur. A strong showing in the first round was wiped out by a high turnout and tactical voting as mainstream parties reacted to the hardline threat.
"As Marion faces the political battles ahead, I wouldn't be surprised if she says a prayer to France's Patron Saint, for Marion is a reminder of her - Joan of Arc," wrote Palin.
Palin said the FN's rise was similar to the success of outsiders such as Donald Trump in the Republican nomination race. "Call it the rise of the populists."
Telegraph Group Ltd