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Macron Gambles With Snap Vote to Prepare Comeback for Centrists After Dismal EU Election Results

© AFP 2023 / ARNAUD FINISTREA screen broadcast an address to the nation by France's President Emmanuel Macron during which he announced he is dissolving the National Assembly.
A screen broadcast an address to the nation by France's President Emmanuel Macron during which he announced he is dissolving the National Assembly. - Sputnik International, 1920, 10.06.2024
The French president called a snap election on Sunday after the European Parliament elections debacle. Emmanuel Macron said he wanted to give France’s voters a chance to choose their “parliamentary future.” The first round of early elections will be held on June 30, with a second on July 7.
French President Emmanuel Macron is betting on finding an electable successor by 2027 after calling snap legislative elections.
Macron's calculation was “very straightforward and very simple,” when he opted to dissolve the National Assembly and call snap elections, Dr John Laughland, a politics and history lecturer at ICES, the Catholic Institute of the Vendée, told Sputnik.
Macron’s “gamble” is that if the right-wing National Rally (RN) which crushed his Renaissance party in the EU elections wins the snap poll and controls the French parliament for the next two or three years, by 2027 some "Macron-type centrist" would have materialized, he said.
There would be “some kind of successor to Macron,” who “would hope to beat the Rassemblement National, which by then will have actually been in power.”

“It's nearly always the case in French elections that the incumbent government is voted out," Laughland noted. "I suppose that's his calculation. That they'll have power for a few years and then everything will get back to normal in 2027.”

As voting in the EU election ended, exit polls revealed that Macron's party had been beaten by the right-wing National Rally (RN), which bagged more than double the vote for Macron's centrists.

Looking at the factors that led up to the crushing defeat, the pundit singled out two.

“Firstly, it's quite common for European elections to be used as a protest vote, Laughland said. "And he [Macron] has been in power now for a long time, and there's obviously a high level of dissatisfaction and so on with his government.”

He suggested that Renaissance's lead candidate Valérie Hayer was “extremely weak.”
If election results in a RN majority in the National Assembly forcing out Macron's government, led by neonate PM Gabriel Attal, change in government, “it is conceivable” that there might be a change in the policy of supporting the proxy conflict in Ukraine, suggested the expert.
The Rassemblement National, in his opinion, appeared more “cautious on provoking Russia so there could be a change.”
“But that's a hypothetical scenario. It depends on whether they do indeed win a parliamentary majority and therefore, form the next government,” Laughland added.
French President Emmanuel Macron listens to US President Joe Biden speak during a joint press conference on December 1, 2022.  - Sputnik International, 1920, 09.06.2024
Macron Dissolves France's National Assembly, Calls Snap Elections
The pundit said Macron’s increasingly hawkish Ukraine policies, ranging from hinting at NATO boots on the ground to talk of sending instructors and allowing Kiev to use Western weapons to strike inside Russia, had caused disquiet.

“I personally think he made a fool of himself at D-Day in Normandy, when he gave an interview after the Normandy landings ceremony, because he said that it didn't make any difference if there were already French nationals or German or British nationals in Ukraine as mercenaries or as civilians,” Laughland said.

At the same time, he said Europeans were “sort of asleep,” or “sleepwalking” when it came to the dangerous escalation the West’s rhetoric and actions were fraught with.
Unfortunately, all indications are that the policy of arming, Ukraine, of sending more and more weapons there will continue, said the lecturer.
After Macron told a French TV channel that Paris will transfer Mirage 2000-5 fighter jets to Kiev and train Ukrainian pilots along with 4,500 Ukrainian ground troops — but does not consider this decision to be an "escalation" — the Kremlin was swift to respond.
"Given that France is a member of NATO, a member of the European Union, a large European state, we consider these statements to be very, very provocative, increasing tension on the continent and not conducive to anything positive," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.
French President Emmanuel Macron - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.06.2024
Russia Views Macron’s Remarks Very Provocative, Escalating Tensions on Continent - Kremlin
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