Macron consults parties to avoid institutional crisis

With Macron’s coalition having just lost its majority in the National Assembly after Sunday’s (19 June) legislative elections, Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne handed in her resignation to the president on Tuesday (21 June), following ‘Republican tradition’. Macron refused it “so that the government remains on task,” the Elysée said. [Shutterstock/Frederic Legrand - COMEO]

After losing his majority in the National Assembly and refusing the resignation of the prime minister, French President Emmanuel Macron began consultations with parties on Tuesday.

With Macron’s coalition having just lost its majority in the National Assembly after Sunday’s (19 June) legislative elections, Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne handed in her resignation to the president on Tuesday (21 June), following ‘Republican tradition’. Macron refused it “so that the government remains on task,” the Elysée said.

Usually, according to the same tradition, the president accepts the post-election resignation as a courtesy and re-charges the prime minister to lead government policy.

Macron then began to receive the various political forces, to “identify possible constructive solutions in the service of the French,” the Elysée said.

One of the possibilities is that a government pact be concluded with another political party. Faced with calls from some leaders of the right to propose or accept it, the president of the Republicans said, after being received by the president, that there was “no question” of proceeding in this way, and that the right would remain “in opposition in a determined but responsible way.”

Some of the Macronist alliance are now advocating a government “that comes as close as possible to national unity,” said François Bayrou, president of the MoDem and supporter of the president.

“We are all responsible” for the political crisis situation that emerged from the polls last Sunday (19 June), Bayrou added, commenting that the President “is perfectly aware” of this and “is looking for the best way for this electoral sequence to be useful to the country for the future.”

Consultations with the president will continue on Wednesday, and Borne “will receive, as early as next week, the presidents of the groups,” announced government spokeswoman Olivia Grégoire.

A reshuffle is planned to replace the three ministers defeated in the legislative elections. Borne herself could be replaced in the coming weeks. Without a majority, there is a risk of institutional paralysis, or at least of a slowed down and disrupted functioning of the institutions.

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