Macron’s Prospects Uncertain After Tight Election

Macron’s Prospects Uncertain After Tight Election
Macron’s Prospects Uncertain After Tight Election

French President Emmanuel Macron may find himself without a ruling majority during his second term and deprived of the ability to push through his economic reform agenda after Sunday’s first round of parliamentary elections saw his ruling coalition tied with a new left-wing alliance.

A strong showing by the left-wing Nupes coalition and gains by the far right made it likely that Macron's "Ensemble" (Together) alliance could lose dozens of National Assembly seats in the second round of voting next Sunday. Here are three possible outcomes, France 24 said Monday.

Macron's top lieutenants have vowed to campaign hard against the "extremist" pledges of the Nupes leader, the veteran leftist Jean-Luc Melenchon, hoping their increasingly strident warnings will persuade voters to hand them a majority of at least 289 seats in the National Assembly.

If that happens, Macron will have free rein to drive through his manifesto, which includes a contested pension reform. Even so, the president is unlikely to find it as easy to push legislation through parliament as during his first mandate.

His former prime minister, Edouard Philippe, who is widely believed to harbor presidential ambitions, has created his own party, officially part of Macron's majority, and is likely to want a say on legislation, pushing for more conservative policies on pensions and public deficits, for instance.

With a tight majority, even a small contingent of lawmakers could help make Philippe a kingmaker during Maron's second term.

Projections made after Sunday’s first round of voting suggest Macron's coalition is likely to remain the biggest force in the next National Assembly – but could fail to reach the 289-mark required to command a majority of seats.

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