Emmanuel Macron: Elections re-parliamentize France | Opinion


President Macron entered this second round with a triple advantage: first, the electoral system favors his position at the center of the political board. Secondly, the 2002 reform imposed the coincidence of the presidential and legislative elections (which were previously held every seven and five years, respectively) with the idea of ​​giving the president-elect an absolute majority in the Assembly and, thirdly, , in demographic terms, its electorate, made up of the richest, most educated and oldest French, is the one that participates the most in the elections. However, the boredom with the management of the liberal president has been able to with these factors. Many Macronist ministers have lost their seats and the clearest consequence of the result is that, after a five-year term in the shadows, the National Assembly will return to the televisions of the French. Macron will have to face for the first time the checks and balances of the legislative power, especially in key commissions such as the one on financial control. In other words, France has become re-parliamentary.

Although Jean-Luc Mélenchon has managed to unite the left around his project and strengthens the position of France Insumisa, he does not meet the high expectations that he had set for himself. Mélenchon has managed to reinvigorate the left, but he still does not convince enough centrist voters or mobilize enough abstentionist voters. In fact, abstention has been the big winner of the night, since more than half of the French stayed at home, a figure that exceeds 70% in the case of those under 35 years of age. As long as young people, popular classes and immigrants continue to abstain at record levels, politics will increasingly depend on the votes of the most favored and will penalize progressive parties. Although NUPES has encouraged the competition, the work of decades cannot be done in two months. Winning elections for the left requires building coalitions between the center and the disenchanted, and Mélenchon’s leadership, coupled with the French electoral system, makes this task enormously difficult.

The great surprise has been given, without a doubt, by the extreme right, which almost triples the forecasts of the polls. This is a vote of discontent, but of structural discontent. The rise of the extreme right also in the legislative elections indicates that there are underlying trends, such as deindustrialization or economic insecurity, that favor Le Pen. These tendencies especially affect certain territories, and the elections have rewarded the territorial implantation of the National Association in certain fiefdoms. In addition, it seems that the fact that the campaign was dominated by the left has mobilized the conservative electorate to prevent “the left-Islamic threat”. However, one of the main culprits for his success has been, without a doubt, Macron himself, having normalized the far-right discourse during his mandate and having broken the Republican front in the legislative elections by comparing the extreme right with the leftist coalition.

Macron is now facing an important dilemma, he needs the Republicans to achieve an absolute majority, but the leader of the traditional right has already announced that they will be in opposition. Macron must decide if he tries to convince this party by bowing to his demands or if he lets disorder rule in Parliament and calls elections in a year, when the legislation allows it. There is still French politics for a while.

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