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Left creeping up for Macron’s centrists week before 2nd round of elections

It’s a razor-thin advantage of the centrist camp of French President Emmanuel Macron over the left a week ahead of a crucial second round of runoff voting in lower house elections that has been bringing the political emotions to a different level in France.

It is a matter of a mere fraction of a percentage. On Sunday, Macron’s Ensemble! alliance of centrist parties won 25.75 percent of the popular vote, according to the interior ministry’s final tally. Meanwhile, Jean-Luc Melenchon’s NUPES bloc came in second with 25.66 percent.

The credibility of the results has already been questioned by one of Melenchon’s most senior allies, namely Manuel Bompard. “Alert to new manipulation by Darmanin”, Mr Bompard tweeted early on Monday, referring to Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin.

ALERTE À LA NOUVELLE MANIPULATION DE #DARMANIN

Alors que la #NUPES réalise 6 101 968 voix (soit 26,8%), le ministère de l’intérieur ne lui attribue que 5 836 202 voix (soit 25,7%) pour faire apparaître artificiellement le parti de #Macron en tête.

Allo le Conseil d’Etat ?

— Manuel Bompard (@mbompard) June 13, 2022

Mr Bompard claimed the NUPES won some 200,000 more votes that were not accounted for in the final results, without presenting any evidence for his assertion.

Left-wing coalition leads narrowly in French parliamentary election

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Predictions before the second round

Main polling institutes signalled that President Macron could lose his grip on parliament in the final round of voting despite his alliance’s favourable position to secure the largest number of seats by a wide margin.

In line with pollster Elabe, Macron’s Ensemble! is set to win between 260 and 300 parliament seats. This still leaves room for speculation about whether the coalition will pin an outright majority down. A total of 289 seats must be secured to that end. Given rival pollster Ipsos’ less favourable estimate of 255-295 for Ensemble!, the task appears even more daring for Macron’s coalition.

For its part, the left is up for strident gains in comparison to 2017. This time the left is expected to grab 170-220 seats.

Rival pollster Ipsos expected Ensemble to win 255 to 295 seats.

France has been experiencing hardship similar to that of the UK and other European states, namely soaring cost of living and eroding wages resulting from rampant inflation. Macron has been bending over backwards to capitalise on his re-election in April, with Melenchon portraying him as a free-marketeer more intent on protecting the wealthy than hard-up families.


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