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The far right in the lead one week before the vote in France

Photo: Ludovic Marin Agence France-Presse “I want to reconcile the French and be the prime minister of all French people, without any distinction,” says the president of the National Rally, Jordan Bardella.

Antonio Rodriguez – Agence France-Presse in Paris

Posted at 4:51 p.m.

  • Europe

One week before the first round of the French legislative elections, President Macron's camp is still seeking to catch up with the left-wing coalition and especially the far right, the big favorite, by promising “change” and governance closer to the people.

“There will be, whatever the result, a before and an after,” Prime Minister Gabriel Attal insisted on Sunday on the plateau of Grand Jury RTL/M6/Le Figaro.

“[…] In the method, in governance, we must do better […] by seeking coalitions with the French, with civil society”, detailed the leader of the presidential camp for this express electoral campaign.

And to ensure that this change was endorsed by Emmanuel Macron, elected for the first time in 2017 then re-elected in 2022. He “perfectly understood that in our way of doing things, in the method, in substance, a change was necessary », insisted Mr. Attal.

According to two latest polls, the National Rally (RN), on the far right, and its allies would obtain between 35.5 and 36% of the vote, ahead of the New Popular Front, an alliance of left-wing parties (27 to 29.5%), and the presidential camp (19.5 to 20%).

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The President of the Assembly, Yaël Braun-Pivet, delivered a mea culpa on the continuous news channel BFMTV, agreeing that the Macronists had been “too vertical”: “I think that we did not involve the French in the policies that we have implemented”.

A recurring criticism addressed to Emmanuel Macron, to which he has tried to respond with initiatives such as the Great National Debate, a vast citizen consultation launched after the “yellow vest” revolt, which saw hundreds of thousands of people rise up against his economic policy in 2018-2019. social.

Scholz “concerned”

Buoyed by the dynamics of the European elections, the president of the RN, Jordan Bardella, approached the second week of the campaign by playing the card of appeasement and unity.

“I want to reconcile the French and be the prime minister of all French people, without any distinction,” he said in an interview with the Journal du Dimanche, reiterating that he would only accept the post if he obtained an absolute majority.

One of the figures of the RN, Louis Aliot, mayor of Perpignan (south-west), also insisted on this condition on Sunday. Because otherwise, “there will be measures which will not be applicable immediately”.

The RN must unveil its “priorities of the government of national unity” on Monday morning which 'he intends to establish.

A victory of the extreme right worries German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

“I am concerned about the elections in France,” he said. “And I hope that the parties that are not [Marine] Le Pen’s, to put it that way, will win the elections. But it is up to the French people to decide,” he added.

In the streets of France, tens of thousands of people took to the streets on Sunday to denounce the “danger” for women’s rights that an RN victory would represent.

“Let him be silent”

The left-wing alliance, for its part, has once again become mired in speculation about its candidate for the post of prime minister in the event of victory, a very sensitive issue within the New Popular Front, which was set up in record time to block the far right and brings together communists, the radical left, environmentalists and social democrats, with sometimes very opposing visions.

On Saturday evening, the leader of the radical left, Jean-Luc Mélenchon (La France insoumise) affirmed his “intention to govern this country,” a red line particularly among the socialists.

“If I have a message to get across, it is that Jean-Luc Mélenchon […], if he wants to do the New Popular Front a favor, he must step aside, he must keep quiet,” the former president grumbled in return to journalists on Sunday. socialist François Hollande, himself a candidate.

The national secretary of the communist party Fabien Roussel, for his part, issued a statement protesting that a possible entry into Matignon of Jean-Luc Mélenchon had “never been the subject of an agreement by the New Popular Front”. “This is false and unbearable”, he protested.

Macron's shock decision to call early legislative elections after his failure in the European elections on June 9 against the RN constitutes his biggest risk-taking since 2017.

The French president had already having difficulty implementing his agenda since he lost the majority in the National Assembly during the June 2022 legislative elections.

But Macron, whose mandate ends in 2027, has ruled out resigning whatever the outcome of the vote.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116