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French election: Macron loses parliamentary majority

PARIS, France (Transatlantic Today) – Emmanuel Macron has lost command of the French National Assembly just under 2 months after being re-elected president, after a stellar performance by the extreme right and a left coalition. 

He had urged voters to give him a clear majority. 

His centrist alliance, on the other hand, lost dozens of votes in a campaign that has splintered French politics. 

Elisabeth Borne, his newly appointed prime minister, described the situation as exceptional. 

As she arrived at her Matignon residence after a long discussion at the presidential Élysée palace, a storm blew through Paris, prompting her to declare that modern France had never witnessed a National Assembly such as this one. 

That appears to be a reach, given that the Assembly’s 2 other largest groups aren’t interested in cooperating in the least. France is not ungovernable, according to Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire, but it will take a lot of ingenuity to get there. 

Jean-Luc Mélenchon, the far-left politician, was celebrating his achievement in forming the Nupes alliance, which brought together major left-wing parties, Communists, and Greens. 

He informed followers that the presidential party had been wiped out and that they now had every chance. His coalition has already surpassed the Socialists as the most powerful opposition group in France, despite opinion polls indicating that they could have done even better. 

However, Marine Le Pen and her right-wing National Rally party were ecstatic after increasing their seat count from eight to 89. She claimed that the people had spoken: Emmanuel Macron’s adventure had come to an end, and he had been relegated to a minority administration. Laure Lavalette, a spokesperson for the party, said the National Assembly now more accurately reflected the sentiments of French voters, and that her party will engage in “constructive opposition.” 

If the prime minister was counting on the far-right Republicans to assist him form a parliamentary majority, their response was not promising. Christian Jacob, the party’s chairman, called the outcome a “stinging failure” for a president who is now paying the price for shamelessly weaponizing France’s extremists. 

He’s no longer Jupiter, according to Dominique Rousseau, a constitutional law expert, referring to a former nickname mocking Mr Macron’s alleged yearning for power. 

Everything changed in April, when he easily defeated Marine Le Pen and secured a 2nd term as president. According to the BBC, he had over 300 seats, but he required 289 to keep his absolute majority, and he only got 245. 

With a turnout of 46.23 percent, well over half of voters abstained. France’s fourth phase of national elections, held in April, alienated young people in particular. 

Minister Of Health Brigitte Bourguignon was one among the ministers who lost their seats, losing by just 56 votes to her far-right challenger. Minister of the Green Transition Amélie de Montchalin also lost, although Europe Minister Clément Beaune made it through after losing in the first phase. 

The president of the Assembly, Richard Ferrand, one of Macron’s key allies, conceded the election to Mélanie Thomin of Nupes. On the Caribbean island of Guadeloupe, another tragedy occurred when Justine Benin, a state secretary, lost her seat. 

In a stirring address to his backers, Mélenchon said the outcome demonstrated “Macronie’s” ethical failure, blaming the ruling party for supporting the extreme right by refusing to provide clear guidance in districts where the left was competing with Le Pen’s party. 

Emmanuel Macron rode a wave of hope 5 years ago, drawing in a new group of civil society MPs. This time, the fresh faces have come from the National Rally and Nupes. 

A hotel chambermaid who led her coworkers in a battle for improved pay and working conditions is one of the MPs chosen for Nupes, which stands for New Ecological and Social Popular Union. Macron has pledged to address the increased cost of living, but his opponents have quite different views about how to do so. Reforming benefits, lowering taxes, and gradually increasing the retirement age from 62 to 65 were among his major suggestions. 

His pensionable age reform will be exceptionally difficult to pass, albeit he will have Republican support. 

There are also plans to achieve full employment and carbon neutrality.  He’s also proposed a new mode of governance with more civil society participation, suggesting a National Council for Refoundation formed out of local people in order to make France more democratic.

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