What happened today in France's presidential race

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French presidential election candidate for the far-right Front National (FN) party Marine Le Pen delivers a speech during a campaign meeting in Arcis-sur-Aube, eastern France, on April 11, 2017

With 12 days left before French voters cast their first ballots for president, far-right leader Marine Le Pen unveiled her "first 10 steps" if elected, while conservative Francois Fillon rejected the latest revelation in a litany of scandals embroiling him.

Here's what happened in the campaign on Tuesday:

- Le Pen's first 60 days -

"Every second of my presidency will be useful to France and the French," National Front (FN) leader Le Pen, 48, said in a video setting out 10 measures she would take within two months.

They include: suspending France's membership of Europe's Schengen border-free zone, deporting foreigners on a watchlist of Islamist radicals, holding a referendum on adopting a French-first policy on access to jobs and public housing and lowering the minimum retirement age from 62 to 60.

- Fed up Fillon -

"I won't say another word about these things," Fillon said after a new report alleged that he put his wife on the public payroll in 1982, four years earlier than he claimed.

Fillon, once the race's frontrunner, was charged with abuse of public funds last month in a scandal that he has blamed on the outgoing Socialist government.

He reiterated the claim Tuesday, saying "successive revelations (have been) carefully disseminated by state services."

The 63-year-old is accused of giving fake jobs to his Welsh-born wife Penelope that earned her hundreds of thousands of euros between 1986 and 2013.

Fillon has seen his poll numbers decline around six points since the scandal broke, followed by a string of other allegations of financial impropriety.

On Tuesday he said he had sensed a "change of attitude" on the campaign trail. "I sense a mobilisation," he said, adding that his "determination is stronger than ever."

- Power of the pen? -

Socialist candidate Benoit Hamon, languishing in fifth place in the latest polls, took pen to paper to urge supporters to keep the faith with his leftwing agenda.

"The past weeks have not shaken any of my convictions, they have strengthened them," he wrote in a letter sent to some nine million voters.

"I want to tell you that a Left that takes action and stays true to itself can and must win the election," the letter said.

Hamon suffered a blow last month when former Socialist prime minister Manuel Valls endorsed centrist Emmanuel Macron. who is currently tipped to clinch the presidency.

The 49-year-old Hamon had hinted on Saturday that he had already given up the fight by saying he would vote for Jean-Luc Melenchon if the far-left candidate gets past the first round on April 23.

Polls currently suggest a May 7 runoff between far-right leader Marine Le Pen and centrist Emmanuel Macron, who is tipped to clinch final victory.