France's ruling Socialists have lost their majority in the Senate -- the country’s upper house of parliament -- to the center-right opposition UMP.
However, the far-right National Front has made electoral history by securing two places in the Senate for the first time in the controversial party’s 40-year life.
More than 87,500 regional and local elected officials voted Sunday, giving the UMP the majority of the seats and allowing the National Front to make its breakthrough.
France’s 348 senators are elected for six-year terms. Sunday's elections were a new victory for the National Front after it topped the French polls in May's European Parliament elections.
"It is a historic victory," said party leader Marine Le Pen.
"These results are beyond what we hoped for," said Le Pen, speaking on French broadcaster BFMTV. "Each day that passes, our ideas are increasingly being adopted by the French people... We have great potential," she added.
The Senate results are another blow for Socialist President Francois Hollande who is suffering from record-low popularity ratings halfway through his five-year term.
However, this win will be considered largely symbolic as the Socialists still control the National Assembly -- parliament’s lower chamber -- which has the final say in drafting legislation.
Yet, by controlling the Senate, the right-wing opposition now has the chance to delay bills supported by Socialists.
Senators will meet on October 1 to elect their president who is, by protocol, second after the president; he replaces him in case of vacancy ahead of the prime minister.
Earlier this year, the ruling Socialist Party lost more than 150 towns and cities to the UMP and far-right in municipal elections.