The second round of the legislative elections offers a duel between the united left and the Macron camp, which will have to fight to retain an absolute majority after a first round marked by record abstention.

Almost two months after the re-election of Emmanuel Macron, the left (LFI, PCF, PS and EELV) gathered under the Nupes banner declared victory by obtaining 25% to 25.9% of the vote, just ahead or tied according to the polling institutes, with the outgoing majority, united under the label Together!.

Both camps have a week to mobilize abstainers, between 52.1 and 53.2% of voters having decided to shun the ballot box in the first round, more than in 2017 (51.3%).

Even if it does not come out on top, the Macron camp retains the advantage in the projections of 577 seats of deputies, with a range of 255 to 295 seats, ahead of Nupes (150 to 210), according to polling institutes .

Together ! hopes to keep the absolute majority, set at 289 deputies, which would allow him to avoid having to deal with other groups to have the texts of the executive adopted, starting with the emblematic pension reform which is to come into effect in a year, according to the promise of Mr. Macron.

But how far will the settlement go for the outgoing majority, when in 2017, LREM and Modem had won more than 32% in the first round before obtaining nearly 350 deputies in the second.

“We are the only political force capable of obtaining a strong and clear majority,” said Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne.

“The majority is far from certain (…) It is a very serious warning which is addressed to Emmanuel Macron”, however estimated Brice Teinturier, deputy general manager of Ipsos France.

Symbol of the difficulties of macronie, two ex-ministers, Jean-Michel Blanquer and Emmanuelle Wargon, were eliminated in the first round. The Minister for Ecological Transition and Territorial Cohesion Amélie de Montchalin is in an unfavorable ballot in her constituency of Essonne, as is the Minister for European Affairs Clément Beaune in Paris.

Elisabeth Borne is in a better position in Calvados with 33% to 36.5% according to the polls.

In the event of defeat for one of the 15 ministers involved, resignation will be inevitable, in accordance with an unwritten rule but already applied in 2017 by Mr. Macron.

“The truth is that the presidential party is beaten and defeated,” launched the rebel Jean-Luc Mélenchon, who called on the “people” to “surge next Sunday” in the voting booths.

The challenge is to try to find the reserves of votes sufficient to send, as they wish, the rebellious leader to Matignon and try to impose on Mr. Macron a government of cohabitation, as the plural left had succeeded in 1997 with Lionel Jospin.

While Mr. Mélenchon had urged the French to make these elections a “third round” of the presidential election, the left should, whatever happens, be the main opposition bloc at the Palais-Bourbon. A form of victory, fruit of the torn unity agreement.

LREM indicated that it would not give national instructions but “on a case-by-case basis” in the constituencies where RN and Nupes candidates are opposed, judging that certain candidates of the united left were “extreme”. A choice deemed “scandalous” by the ecologist Yannick Jadot.

As expected, the candidates of the National Rally (18.5% to 19.8%) failed to capitalize on the momentum of Marine Le Pen, who had garnered more than 40% of the votes in the second round. Confined to eight elected in 2017, the contingent of RN deputies should however be much larger this time, and still count in its ranks Ms. Le Pen, given largely in the lead in her constituency of Pas-de-Calais (around 55%) .

From her stronghold of Hénin-Beaumont, she urged voters to “send a very large group of patriotic deputies to the new National Assembly”.

In the event of a duel between Together! and the Nupes, Mrs Le Pen urged her supporters “not to choose”. “France is neither a trading room nor a ZAD,” she thundered.

Conversely, in the wake of the heavy fall of its presidential candidate Valérie Pécresse, LR (11.4% to 14%) should lose its place as the leading opposition group in the National Assembly.

The Republicans will count their survivors among the hundred outgoing, hoping to make the most of their local roots. But already several figures were beaten on Sunday, such as Julien Aubert, Gilles Platret or Guillaume Larrivé.

For his part, Eric Zemmour, who was one of the leaders of the presidential election, missed his landing in politics. The far-right polemicist was eliminated in the Var, as were the other ambassadors of his Reconquest! party, Guillaume Peltier in the Loir-et-Cher and Stanislas Rigault in the Vaucluse.

06/13/2022 00:09:17 –         Paris (AFP) –         © 2022 AFP