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Valls making a fool of himself; Macron

Unpopular former French PM discovers a fragile Macron

The former Socialist premier of France could not clique his way into a fragile Emmanuel Macron's future government yet.

Published: May 11, 2017, 11:57 am

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    Paris

    “I will be a candidate for the presidential majority,” the unpopular former French Socialist prime minister Manuel Valls told broadcaster RTL on Tuesday, without warning Emmanuel Macron or anyone else for that matter.

    A few minutes later on Europe 1, Benjamin Griveaux, Macron’s spokesperson, sharply retorted that the former prime minister “should have applied like everyone else”.

    Manuel Valls quickly telephoned Jean-Paul Delevoye, chairman of the commission of investiture, to plead his cause directly. And the scene, reported by French radio station Europe1, was quite unusual. Manuel Valls had obviously encountered some technical difficulties in trying to insert himself into the new administration.

    Valls was trying to gain access to the website of Macron’s party En Marche! “Jean-Paul, I do not understand. I click, I click on your site, but it does not work … ”

    Jean-Paul Delevoye replied that he could do nothing about it, and that the procedure was the same for all.

    On Tuesday, following the announcement of Manuel Valls, the headquarters of Emmanuel Macron was inundated by angry calls from dozens and dozens of candidates and activists of En Marche! saying: “No, do not take him[Valls]!” Some went so far as to threaten: “If you take Valls, I’ll go straight to the Front National.”

    The Ispos poll conducted from 4 to 6 May however testifies to the indecision of the French even after the election and the splintering of political life. To the question, do you want Emmanuel Macron to have an absolute majority in the National Assembly, an overwhelming majority of respondents answered in the negative, according to French weekly, Le Point.

    The poll highlighted Macron’s very fragile position. According to the Ipsos institute, 61 percent, almost two-thirds do not want Emmanuel Macron to have an absolute majority of MPs in the National Assembly.

    Only one-third of those surveyed voted Macron for the political renewal he represents, while 16 percent approved of his program and 8 percent voted for his personality. This points to the weak electoral base of an ill-elected president.

    Abstention, higher than usual, harbors several types of behavior. According to Ipsos, 31 percent of absentees totally reject the two finalists, while 28 percent without rejecting them, do not agree with the two finalists. Finally, 10 percent of abstentionists say they are not interested in politics.

    Ispos also asked respondents about the personality of the future prime minister: Some 43 percent of respondents believe that a personality from civil society would be “rather a good idea”. 28 percent of respondents think that it would be “rather a bad idea”, considering that “it takes experience”, and 29 percent answered “neither one nor the other”.

    Only 28 percent of respondents believe it would be rather satisfactory that a new Prime Minister comes from the moderate right versus 30 percent who would be rather disappointed. It should be noted that 46 percent of respondents seem indifferent as to the political colour of a new Prime Minister.

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