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Macron switches to election campaign mode after snap election call

In World
June 10, 2024

Following President Emmanuel Macron’s resounding defeat in the European elections, France has swiftly entered election campaign mode.

Macron dissolved the National Assembly, France’s lower house of parliament, on Sunday and scheduled parliamentary elections in just a few weeks’ time.

Various parties are strategizing their campaigns in response to the sudden electoral call.

France’s far-right National Rally, led by Marine Le Pen, emerged as the clear winner of the European elections in France, securing 31.36% of the vote, according to preliminary results announced by the Interior Ministry on Monday after all the votes had been counted.

Macron’s camp came a distant second with 14.6%, followed by the Socialists with 13.83%. Another far-right party, Reconquest, won 5.47%.

The eurosceptic National Rally – which used to be called the National Front until six years ago – has softened its image in recent years in an effort to widen its appeal and strengthen Le Pen’s bid for the presidency.

Macron’s job as president is not at stake in the upcoming elections, as the next presidential election is not scheduled until 2027.

Government under pressure for a long time

His aim is to create a more stable majority in parliament for his remaining term of office. He will be hoping that citizens in France will not vote the same way in national elections as they did in the European Parliament elections, and that the snap election will break Le Pen’s momentum.

While Macron enjoys a prominent role on the international stage, his governing camp has been struggling domestically for two years as his faction has not had an absolute majority in the National Assembly.

This has forced his camp to navigate a contentious and combative legislative environment, often resorting to heavy-handed tactics and bypassing votes to implement their plans.

The threat of a vote of no confidence this autumn has loomed over the government for some time, adding to the challenges of governance.

Consequences for Germany and Europe

If Macron’s gamble fails, it could have serious repercussions for Germany and Europe. Observers say he could lose substantial influence, making it difficult for him to advance his foreign policy agenda.

France could descend into a chaotic domestic political situation, compromising its reliability as an international partner.

However, if Macron manages to secure a more stable majority, it would benefit international partners as he would no longer be preoccupied with quelling domestic political unrest.

This marks the first dissolution of the French National Assembly in over 25 years, a significant move in France’s recent political history.

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