Today is April 12, 2022. And we are 12 days away from the second round of the French Presidential elections.
Given Left Wing Jean Luc Melenchon’s result of 22% on Sunday in a very close third spot, as expected, all the attention is on how his voters are going to behave in 12 days.
The most recent projections reveal an unexpected outcome. Despite the left wing leader’s repeated calls to not cast a single vote to Le Pen, – he repeated it three times in a row during his speech on Sunday night – it appears that 30% of Melenchon’s voters are ready to actually vote for Le Pen.
Of course, this makes the result of the second round even more unpredictable. This is quite clear in the latest projections of 54% Macron / 46% Le Pen in the most favorable scenario for Macron, and 51% Macron / 49% Le Pen in the tightest projection.
In this very open situation, the Melenchon camp will play a crucial role and will likely shift the results until the very last days. We can also expect Melenchon and his camp to leverage that role once the result of the election comes out in 12 days. There are indeed general elections in June that will probably reshuffle the cards in parliament.
Right now, President Macron’s party, La Republique en Marche, represents 268 seats out of the 577 seats at the National Assembly, the lower chamber of Parliament, while the higher chamber, the Senate is distributed according to much more traditional lines of political distribution. Yet a President in France needs to govern with a government and to execute his program, French Presidents need to rely on a government headed by a Prime Minister whose authority emanates from the distribution of seats at the lower chamber, the Assemblée Nationale. And we cannot exclude a situation where the President elected on April 24 may not benefit from a majority that does not come from his or her own camp. In June, the general election may very lead to a majority that do not align with the elected president on April 24.
The 6 to 7 weeks between April 24 and June 12-19, will witnessed incredible positioning between the various political forces coming out these elections.
Given the results of April 10 for the first round of the presidential election, the Left Wing party La France Insoumise founded by Jean Luch Mélenchon appears to be the party that can leverage its position on either side of the political spectrum.
President Macron is already watering down his reform of the pension system as a gesture to that large segment of voters already.
Meanwhile, Le Pen is also making herself more acceptable and respectable by toning down her wishes to exit the Euro and her reform on pensions as well.
Let me know if you have questions and I look forward to hearing your thoughts. Feel free to comment.