Monday, July 15, 2024

Macron: ‘No one won’ French elections

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Macron’s claims are partially true. The NFP won just under 200 seats in the National Assembly — ahead of the second-place pro-Macron Ensemble coalition and the far-right National Rally, which finished a disappointing third. But their total left them far short of the 289-seat threshold needed to secure a majority in the legislature.

Still, the president’s ungracious verdict is bound to cause a furor on the left, which has faulted Macron’s behavior since Sunday’s election and accuses him of refusing to recognize his defeat by not calling on them to form a new government.

Macron has governed without a majority in the French lower house since 2022, albeit with more seats in the chamber than the left won on Sunday.

With no faction coming close to 289, Macron called on “all political forces that identify with republican institutions, the rule of law, parliamentarianism, a European orientation and the defence of French independence, to engage in a sincere and loyal dialogue to build a solid majority.”

Coalition talks have become a feature of French politics since Sunday, a rare event in a country that usually enjoys stable one-party majorities. MPs within Macron’s own camp have disagreed on what route to take, with some urging cooperation with conservatives in the National Assembly to build a right-wing bloc to outflank the leftists, and others advocating a partnership with moderates on both the left and right.

“The New Popular Front is without contest the first force in the new National Assembly,” the NFP wrote in a Tuesday statement. “Were the president to persist in refusing to recognize the results of Sunday’s election, this would be a betrayal of the spirit of the constitution.”

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