Six months at the Elysée palace : Macron, the great communicator to the bully-lit

Emmanuel Macron at the Elysée palace on 23 August 2017. A mixture of seduction and authoritarianism…
© Elodie Grégoire to The Point


Six months ago, Emmanuel Macron was reformed beating the drum. The young president, the fort of the victory of his party in legislative elections, did not have a time limit. He attacked the records of explosives the labour law and the ISF, has asserted its authoritarian style, sacrificing a few feathers of its popularity to the passage. The president has kept his campaign promises by voting this summer for the laws on the moralization of political life and security, and relaxed by orders of the labour law, a small revolution.

“It takes place over a very long horizon and not to yield” sums up a close. And for the observer, the one who was 39 years old is the youngest elected president in France is already thinking of his re-election in 2022. Decided to maintain a high pace of reforms in spite of a popularity decline of 20 points since his arrival, Mr. Macron has started work on the reforms of unemployment insurance, vocational training, housing policy, or the entrance to the university. In 2018 and subsequent years, it will be the turn including the justice and retirement plans, not to mention the promise of reducing the number of deputies and senators.

A government-disciplined, a majority that owes him everything

The ex-minister of François Hollande has brought to the presidential office a stature of authority and an international aura that greet each other according to polls a majority of French people, by receiving with pomp in Paris, Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin and many world leaders. “These six months were well spent,” says his entourage. “The country is ripe for these reforms,” says a government source. To assist him, he has surrounded himself with a government-disciplined, without much notoriety, entrusted to Édouard Philippe, quadra faithful come to the right moderate. In the national Assembly, it is based on a party of novices who must have him all. The wave Macron has permanently weakened his opponents. Neither unions nor France insubordinate have been able to significantly mobilize against the reform of the right to work, the PS is dying, The Republicans divided, the FN is depressed since the debate between the two towers.

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But the opinion criticized the reform of the tax on capital or the decline in subsidised jobs, with a label of “president of the rich” that sticks to the skin.

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The Élysée account at the end of the housing tax in three years to 80 % of the households and the reduction of employee contributions from January to correct this image. “He has time”, underlines the political scientist Bruno Cautrès (Cevipof). The electoral calendar is empty until european elections of 2019, and the economic situation improves. Emmanuel Macron has set a deadline of 18 months to two years for a first assessment of its reforms. The French give it a time limit, since 50 % believe that it is still too early to judge.

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It displays finally huge ambitions for Europe, from the european army to the tax rate that is coordinated, projects on which many of his partners are reluctant. It has shaken up (a little) the lines on the directive on the work posted. To the contrary, he must deal with the delays in Brussels on the ban of glyphosate and postpone the reduction in the nuclear fleet.

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It has the image of someone who does not attention to the suffering of the people

The French have discovered a determined man, sometimes irascible, that is, on his word to convince and willingly baths of the crowd and selfies, but can crop curtly journalists or ministers and replace illico a chief of staff argumentative.

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Loving him “say things”, it launches spread biting against a state of mind French that it considers too negative, and who “hate the reform.” He blasted the “lazy”, “cynical”, the “jealous” that attack the rich and want to “throw pebbles at the first of the rope”, those who are successful. And accused protesters of “fuck the shit” instead of looking for work.

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“The main surprise is the incredible control and this side is inflexible. And also these small sentences, as if he thought he should shake up taboos national,” says Bruno Cautrès. “The result will depend on its success in socio-economic. (…) It has the image of someone who does not attention to the suffering of the people, which to him at night,” warns the analyst.

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