Macron’s leadership at risk amid tensions over pension plan


By Sylvie Corbett | The Associated Press

PARIS (AP) – A parody photo appearing on protest signs and online in France shows President Emmanuel Macron sitting on piles of rubbish. It’s a reference to the uncollected rubbish of Paris’ sanitation workers on strike – and what many French people think of their leader.

Macron had hoped his push to raise the retirement age from 62 to 64 would cement his legacy as the president who transformed France’s economy in the 21st century. Instead, he finds his leadership contested, both in parliament and on the streets of major cities. cities.

His brazen push through a pension reform bill without a vote has infuriated the political opposition and could hurt his government’s ability to pass legislation for the remaining four years of his term.

Protesters held up the parody photo in protests after Macron chose at the last minute on Thursday to invoke the government’s constitutional power to pass the bill without a vote in the National Assembly.

In his first public comment on the matter since then, the 45-year-old leader expressed his wish that the bill “reaches the end of its democratic path in an atmosphere of respect for all”, according to a statement from his office. on Sunday. provided to the Associated Press.

Since becoming president in 2017, Macron has often been accused of arrogance and lack of contact. Seen as “the president of the rich”, he aroused resentment for telling an unemployed person that he only needed to “cross the street” to find work and for suggesting that some French workers were “lazy”.

Now, Macron’s government has alienated citizens “for a long time” by using the special authority it has under Article 49.3 of the French constitution to impose a widely unpopular change, said Brice Teinturier, deputy director general of research institute Ipsos.

He said the only winners from the situation were far-right leader Marine Le Pen and her National Rally party, “which is continuing its strategy of ‘becoming respectable’ and opposing Macron”, and France’s trade unions. Le Pen has been runner-up to Macron in the country’s last two presidential elections.

As the rubbish piles up and the smell gets worse, many people in Paris are blaming Macron, not the striking workers.

Macron has repeatedly said he was convinced the French pension system needed to be changed to keep it funded. He says that other proposed options, such as increasing the already heavy tax burden, would alienate investors, and that cutting pensions for current retirees was not a realistic alternative.

Public displays of discontent can weigh heavily on your future decisions. The spontaneous, sometimes violent, protests that have erupted in Paris and across the country in recent days are in stark contrast to the largely peaceful demonstrations and strikes previously organized by France’s major unions.

Macron’s re-election for a second term in April bolstered his position as a senior player in Europe. He campaigned on a pro-business agenda, pledging to address the pension issue and saying French people should “work harder”.

In June, Macron’s centrist alliance lost its majority in the lower house of parliament, although it still holds more seats than other political parties. He said at the time that his government wanted to “legislate differently”, based on compromises with various political groups.

Since then, Conservative lawmakers have agreed to support a few bills that fit their own policies. But tensions over the pension plan and widespread lack of trust between ideologically diverse parties could derail attempts to seek a deal.

Macron’s political opponents in the National Assembly introduced two no-confidence motions on Friday against Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne’s government. Administration officials are hoping to survive the vote on the motions scheduled for Monday because the opposition is divided, with many Republicans unlikely to support it.

If a motion passes, however, it would deal a huge blow to Macron: The pension bill would be rejected and his cabinet would have to resign. In that case, the president would need to appoint a new cabinet and find that his ability to pass legislation is weakened.

Macron hopes to propose new measures aimed at reducing France’s unemployment rate to 5% from 7.2% now, by the end of his second and final term.

If no-confidence motions fail, Macron could enact a higher retirement age but try to appease his critics with a government reshuffle.

In any case, Macron would retain his post until his term expires in 2027 and retain substantial powers over foreign policy, European affairs and defence. As Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, he can make decisions about France’s support for Ukraine and other global issues without parliamentary approval.

France’s strong presidential powers are a legacy of General Charles de Gaulle’s desire to have a stable political system for the Fifth Republic he established in 1958.

Another option in the hands of the president is to dissolve the National Assembly and call early parliamentary elections.

That scenario seems unlikely for now, as the pension plan’s unpopularity means Macron’s alliance is unlikely to secure a majority of seats. And if another party won, he would have to name a prime minister from the majority faction, empowering the government to implement policies that diverge from the president’s priorities.

Le Pen has said he would like a breakup.

#Macrons #leadership #risk #tensions #pension #plan


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

10 Most Beautiful Pics of Ellyse Perry क्या होते हैं पेंटीहोज? Raj Kapoor’s Holi Celebration टीम इंडिया की धमाकेदार होली Michael B. Jordan Strips Down to Underwear