This time it’s the right one. Finally, normally… Emmanuel Macron thanked “with solemnity” the Castex government, Wednesday, at the end of the Council of Ministers. The last therefore, before the appointment of a new Prime Minister and the government that goes with it. As always in this period of nomination, the rumors are going well but in recent days they are all going in one direction: towards a woman, from the center left. Two have publicly claimed to have declined: Véronique Bédague, former chief of staff of Manuel Valls at Matignon, and Valérie Rabault, current president of the socialist group in the National Assembly.
A month away from the first round of the legislative elections, the wind is blowing hard in the sails of Marisol Touraine, former Minister of Social Affairs of François Hollande and Audrey Azoulay, current secretary general of Unesco, she was also a minister during the last socialist five-year term.
After two Prime Ministers from the right in his first term, this change of shoulder of Emmanuel Macron is in fact necessary after the campaign he has just led. “It allows him to embody the promise made to the French between the two rounds: those of a new method, of a mandate which is not just the continuation of the first”, judge Bruno Cautrès, researcher at CNRS and Cevipof . “If Emmanuel Macron still took a Prime Minister from LR, since he has just swallowed up the electorate, everyone would say that he is the new leader of the right. This would be taking the risk of reviving a left-right divide, not favorable to the president. What’s more, faced with a united left bloc, probably not in the majority in June but which can emerge stronger from the legislative elections.
Making Macron’s left-wing policies visible
As usual, on the side of the outgoing majority, right or left, it does not matter. What is needed is for the next prime minister to be “coherent”, explains the deputy of Landes, Lionel Causse, stamped on the left of the presidential majority. Understand: that he or she is a bridge between the different components of macronie. “That’s how we’ve always operated. I appreciated Edouard Philippe for that, even if I had differences with him. And it was the same with Castex, ”notes the former socialist. “It’s about having someone who can carry the presidential project,” thinks someone close to Edouard Philippe, not terrified for a penny by the prospect of such an appointment.
To apply the retirement at 64 or 65 years and the conditionality of the RSA, two strong promises of the candidate Macron and clearly marked on the right, this member of the right wing of the majority sees with a good eye the arrival of a personality from center left. Pledge for him of a “person who has a sense of dialogue, in particular with the social partners and the local authorities, for me, that would even be a plus”. It would also be a good opportunity, if not to bring life in any case to show the famous left leg of the macronie whose balance sheet is at least not very visible: “If I have a frustration during this first mandate it is that we n failed to impose a political reading of our social measures… We only talk about the 5 euros less on the APL or retirement at 65, never of whatever it costs”, deplores the deputy from the North, also a former socialist, Catherine Osson.
Electorally, is there not a risk of scaring the right-wing electorate, largely siphoned off by Emmanuel Macron on April 10? The MP from the North believes that the confidence of her electorate in her president is strong enough and “from there, whoever he appoints, it will follow”. Azoulay, Touraine, Rabault or Bédague are all linked to the Hollande five-year term, it could also be a signal to voters on the left who are not convinced by the Nupes… Except that a priori, this electorate is generally already at home. No risk of clinging to the quinquennium Hollande, which did not leave only good memories? Again, not an insurmountable obstacle: “You don’t need someone who has been branded by the Hollande five-year term, but that’s not the case, except perhaps for Marisol Touraine, but I don’t think not on his appointment, ”says the Horizon deputy quoted above. The former Minister of Social Affairs was nevertheless greeted very strongly by Emmanuel Macron during his inauguration on Saturday.
Everyone sails by sight anyway as long as we don’t know the name of the lucky one. And it will probably have to wait until the beginning of the week. Until then, nothing prevents Emmanuel Macron from finally changing his mind. If we are to believe Catherine Osson, there is in any case little chance of being wrong as long as he respects the “debate postulate of La République en Marche: the best of the left, the best of the right and the best of civil society”.