Macron loses absolute majority in parliament

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20 Jun 2022, 9:01 am

Reuters

Quote:
French President Emmanuel Macron lost control of the National Assembly in legislative elections on Sunday, a major setback that could throw the country into political paralysis unless he is able to negotiate alliances with other parties.

Macron's centrist Ensemble coalition, which wants to raise the retirement age and further deepen EU integration, was on course to end up with the most seats in Sunday's election.

But they will be well short of the absolute majority needed to control parliament, near-final results showed.

A broad left-wing alliance was set to be the biggest opposition group, while the far-right scored record-high wins and the conservatives were likely to become kingmakers.

A hung parliament will require a degree of power-sharing and compromises among parties not experienced in France in recent decades. read more

There is no set script in France for how things will now unfold. The last time a newly elected president failed to get an outright majority in parliamentary elections was in 1988.

Macron could eventually call a snap election if legislative gridlock ensues.

"The rout of the presidential party is complete and there is no clear majority in sight," hard-left veteran Jean-Luc Melenchon told cheering supporters.

Leftwing Liberation called the result "a slap" for Macron, and economic daily Les Echos "an earthquake."

United behind Melenchon, leftwing parties were seen on course to triple their score from the last legislative election in 2017.

In another significant change for French politics, far-right leader Marine Le Pen's National Rally party could score a ten-fold increase in MPs with as many as 90-95 seats, initial projections showed. That would be the party's biggest-ever representation in the assembly.

Macron and his allies must now decide whether to seek an alliance with the conservative Les Republicains, who came fourth, or run a minority government that will have to negotiate bills with other parties on a case-by-case basis.


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