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PostMacron's Reelection, and His Challenge to Unite French Society (Consoly Leon Arias, Spain / Canary, 04/26/22 10:30 pm)
Emmanuel Macron repeated the victory he achieved five years ago in the French presidential elections, to the relief of most French people but, above all, of the rest of Europe, which has followed these elections with interest.
Macron's main rival, as in 2017, was Marine Le Pen, who on this occasion halved the gap from the previous election, pulverizing her electoral ceiling, which shows the French people's rejection of the policy of the Republic on the Move, the European center party headed by Macron. The victory for Macron is far from a popular endorsement of his policies of these five years. On the contrary, the citizen response to Macron's political management has been the dominant note of his mandate, with phenomena as worrying as the yellow vests movement or the strong response to the restrictive measures in the fight against the viral pandemic as two very relevant facts that should make the French president reflect.
France no longer has the moderating cushion of the two traditional parties, one center-left and one center-right, which mitigated the strong tensions at the extremes of French politics. The Republicans and the Socialists, who have fulfilled that function throughout the current Fifth Republic, have practically disappeared from a political space that only has Macron's party as a factor of stability. Outside of it, it is the extremes, the ones that vigorously receive the majority vote, and very especially, the party of Marine Le Pen, which for the second time in a row has reached the second round, finally obtaining the support of 43% of French voters.
Macron himself seems to be aware of the weakness of his position in the Elysée, where he will continue for another five years, for attracting less rejection than his rival and having benefited from the vote of the losing parties in the first round. His words after his victory confirm this, assuring that this mandate will not be a continuation of the one that has just ended, in which the fracture between the urban elites and rural France has become extraordinarily sharp.
In two months, in addition, the French will hold legislative elections, which may result in an Assembly with a majority contrary to Macron's interests, making the legislative task of this new mandate very difficult. The President of the French Republic will have to work hard in the coming years to unite French society again.
JE comments: Le Pen's 43% is close to half of the electorate, which places France in the position of most of today's liberal democracies: an extremely divided society. Consoly, from what you've read/heard, how is Macron proposing to achieve the impossible--unite his people?