After Victory in French Parliament, Macron Moves to Appoint a Cabinet
The French Parliamentary elections are over. Emmanuel Macron’s party, La République en Marche, has walked away with 350 seats in the 577 seat parliament, giving the French President an overwhelming victory in the election. The French Elections, which has been closely-followed all over the world, has finally ended. Now, the political outsider, centrist Emmanuel Macron, looks to appoint a cabinet to lead his country in the times ahead.
The 350 seats gained by the newly formed La République en Marche party and its ally MoDem, which is a party on the center right, give President Macron the majority needed to push forward his agenda of social and economic reforms.
This election happens after an unprecedented rate of voter-abstention. Merely 43% of French voters went to the polls for the second round of voting. The political elites see this turnout as a failure of French democracy.
Many fresh faces join the newly-elected French Parliament. Three-quarters these parliamentary members are entering into their first term serving.
Before running for office, Emmanuel Macron worked as a minister of the economy and an investment banker. Aged 39, President Macron is the youngest leader of France since Napoleon. In the presidential election last month, Macron defeated the far-right nationalist Marine Le Pen, who has since been ousted completely from the French political scene with her party, Front National, only earning eight seats in Parliament, failing to take the fifteen seats needed to form a recognized party.
The left-wing paper Libération announced the results with the headline “Victory for the Center.” Indeed, in the wake of the Front National, France has swung to the center with the conservative coalition lead by Les Républicains forming the major opposition group.
The Socialists, the party of former president François Hollande, lost over 250 seats, ending up with a meager twenty-nine representatives in parliament.
With the center in the majority and the conservatives forming the major opposition, will anyone in parliament resist Macron’s economic policy? Such resistance, it seems, will come from the left. Jean-Luc Mélenchon, a major candidate in the presidential election, managed to secure seventeen seats for his party France Unbowed. The Communist Party, likewise, managed to glean a total of ten seats.
A number of trade unions, moreover, have already stated that they will organize resistance against any threats to the rights of French workers. With the high abstention rate, Macron will likely tread cautiously. Despite his election, the high abstention rate indicates a lack of public support, making public opinion weigh heavily on the new President’s mind.
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