France’s elections…the first debate between the main blocs in a charged atmosphere

The three main political blocs fighting the legislative elections battle faced each other France During a television debate, Tuesday, while he was leading far right Opinion polls, while the French President warns Emmanuel Macron From the risk of “civil war” if his opponents win.

Prime Minister Gabriel Attal, representing the presidential majority, met with the head of the far-right National Rally, Jordan Bardella, and the coordinator of the Proud France Party, Manuel Bombard, representing the leftist bloc, in a television event, the first during the current electoral season, in the context of a charged and tense electoral campaign.

After its success in the European elections, the National Rally party dominates the opinion polls preceding the first round of the French legislative elections, obtaining 36% of voting intentions, according to the Ifop Institute, and therefore it can aspire to reach power, which would constitute a historic event.

This far-right party leads the left-wing New Popular Front coalition (29.5%) and the presidential camp (20.5%).

So far, nothing seems to be hindering the dynamic that might lead him to the Prime Minister’s headquarters in the Matignon Palace, despite the ambiguity of his position regarding the possible cancellation of the retirement law, and his declared refusal to assume the position of prime minister if he does not obtain an absolute majority at the end of the second round, which will take place on the seventh. From next July.

Macron attacks

On the presidential camp side, Macron, who is being criticized by various parties for dissolving the National Assembly after his team’s failure in the recent European elections, is doubling down on his statements despite the warnings of his allies and the decline in his popularity.

His camp appears to be the weakest among the three competing blocs, even if it is allied with the Republicans (right) who are opposed to the National Rally Party (7 to 10%).

The French President said in a podcast broadcast on Monday that the programs of “extremists” lead “to civil war,” pointing out that the far right “refers to people based on their religion or origin (the place they come from).”

He added that the extreme right “is dividing and pushing towards a civil war,” while the Proud France party proposes “a form of sectarianism… and this is also a civil war.” Thus, Macron is following a strategy of exaggeration.

In response to these statements, Marine Le Pen said: “He did this to us during all the election campaigns,” while her ally Eric Ciotti (right) described it as a “strategy of fear,” while Jean-Luc Mélenchon, leader of the Proud France party, accused him of being “always there to light the fire.” “.

“Debating will not change things.”

But will the debate on TF1 change the balance between the three blocs? “People have already chosen, it’s crystallized,” an official in Macron’s team told this question, adding that “the debate won’t change things. It might push those who abstained to vote… and that’s to our advantage.”

Confronting the National Rally Party, about 200 figures from the Green Party, Macron’s Party, and the Socialists called, through Le Monde newspaper, on the right, center, and left, to announce a “clear and effective withdrawal” in anticipation of the second round of elections.

For his part, the former socialist minister and former director of the International Monetary Fund, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who has withdrawn from political life since the Sofitel Hotel case in New York, called during an interview with Challenges magazine for “eliminating the far-right candidate” in the second round, even if necessary. Voting for the Proud France party “involuntarily”.

Before the television interview, Jordan Bardella and Gabriel Attal demanded that Jean-Luc Mélenchon attend the debate instead of Manuel Bombard. These two consider the former presidential election candidate to be the real contender for the position of prime minister within the New Popular Front alliance.

This comes as other political forces in the Left Alliance demand a “consensual” candidate and not to adopt a candidate from the Proud France party, which they consider “divisive.”

Green Party leader Marine Tondolet said on Monday that Jean-Luc Mélenchon “is not the leader of the New Popular Front, and will not be prime minister.”

In response to this, Mélenchon confirmed in an interview with France 2 that “the next prime minister will be from the Proud France Party,” referring to figures in his party, such as Manuel Bombard and Mathilde Bannot, as candidates for the position, without excluding himself from the list of contenders.

For its part, the Republicans (right) party submitted an urgent request to the Council of State, which is the highest administrative court in France, to be invited to the debate, considering its exclusion to be “extremely harmful.”

The first round of the legislative elections began on Tuesday, with French people abroad voting online.

A month before the Olympic Games in Paris, the result of the expected elections raises fears among the French at home, as well as abroad, about the specter of the first extreme right-wing government in the country’s history, and a National Assembly (parliament) dominated by three discordant poles for at least a year.

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