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Home / World / Deny Emmanuel Macron House majority, political rivals tell voters

Deny Emmanuel Macron House majority, political rivals tell voters

Voting isn’t over, the legislative elections are the third round, says a close Le Pen ally
Emmanuel Macron in Paris on Sunday after being  re-elected on Sunday.
Emmanuel Macron in Paris on Sunday after being re-elected on Sunday.
Reuters

Reuters   |   Paris   |   Published 26.04.22, 01:34 AM

French President Emmanuel Macron enjoyed no respite on Monday as, hours after he won re-election by defeating the far-Right’s Marine Le Pen, political opponents called on voters to deny him a parliamentary majority.

 If he fails to score another victory in the June 12 and 19 parliamentary elections, the pro-European, centrist President will struggle to advance with his pro-business agenda, including unpopular plans to push back the retirement age.

“Voting isn’t over, the legislative elections are the third round,” said Jordan Bardella, a close Le Pen ally, telling voters: “Don’t put all the power in Emmanuel Macron’s hands.”

 The hard Left’s Jean-Luc Melenchon, who came third —just behind Le Pen — in the April 10 first round of the election, said Macron had been elected “by default”.

“Don’t give up,” he told supporters. “You can beat Macron (in the parliamentary election) and choose a different path.” In recent French legislative ballots, the President’s party has always won a majority in parliament.

 Should the outcome be different this time, Macron would have little choice but to name a Prime Minister from another party, ushering in what has traditionally been a tense period of “cohabitation” during which presidential powers are severely curbed.

During a cohabitation, the President remains the head of the armed forces and retains some foreign policy influence but the government has responsibility for most other day-to-day matters of state and policy.

“The reality is there is more to the French election story than Macron’s win yesterday,” said Rabobank FX strategist Jane Foley. Final results of Sunday’s run-off showed Macron took 58.54 per cent of the vote. While a clear win, the result also gave the far-Right its biggest share of the presidential ballot on record.

Macron and his allies pledged to govern differently and listen more to voters.

France’s unemployment rate dropped to its lowest in 13 years during Macron’s first term, and its economy — the world’s seventh largest — outperformed other big European countries as well as the broader euro currency zone.

But his sometimes abrasive style and pro-business reforms have stirred much discontent, especially amid Left-wing voters. Macron acknowledged in a low-key victory speech that many had voted for him mainly to thwart his far-Right challenger.

“Many in this country voted for me not because they support my ideas but to keep out those of the far-Right. I want to thank them and know I owe them a debt in the years to come,” Macron said. 



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