PARIS — French President Emmanuel Macron hit again Wednesday in opposition to hypothesis he has turn into a lame-duck president paving the best way for the far proper to return to energy, a day after his flagship immigration invoice was voted by way of — with the assist of the far-right Nationwide Rally.
Macron’s authorities has been in disaster since his coalition splintered over a invoice that was deemed too right-wing by many centrist lawmakers, elevating essential questions as as to whether he can nonetheless govern successfully.
In his first interview since Monday’s vote, the French president denied any long-term injury, even whereas Nationwide Rally chief Marine Le Pen celebrated and solid the toughened invoice as an “ideological victory” for her camp.
My majority “hasn’t shrunk,” the French president mentioned on the France 5 TV channel. “I respect the men and women who abstained or voted in opposition to the invoice, however has one in all them left our coalition? Has one in all them mentioned I’m breaking away?”
On Tuesday, nearly 1 / 4 of the 251 MPs in Macron’s coalition abstained or voted in opposition to the immigration invoice after it was considerably hardened to win the backing of the conservative Les Républicains occasion. Well being Minister Aurélien Rousseau resigned inside 24 hours of the vote, telling journalists he couldn’t “clarify the invoice.” In the meantime, the Nationwide Rally’s 88 lawmakers voted in favor, in a shock U-turn that has embarrassed Macron’s troops.
Throughout 10 days of excessive drama in parliament, Macron’s authorities misplaced management of the invoice and was pressured to accede to mounting requests from conservatives, feeding hypothesis that the president had lastly misplaced his capacity to manipulate France after his defeat in parliamentary elections final yr.
However on Wednesday, Macron appeared bullish and dismissed these doubts: “I haven’t completed the work. I nonetheless have three and a half years forward of me, and let me inform you, I’m not stopping now,” he mentioned.
The French president additionally pushed again in opposition to accusations he was encouraging the rise of the far proper, regardless of Le Pen’s gleeful claims of victory.
The newest model of the immigration invoice features a host of measures to curb unlawful migration, together with quotas limiting the variety of arrivals in France and tighter circumstances for household residency permits. Probably the most contentious measures is an imposed five-year anticipate authorized immigrants who want to apply for social safety advantages, which could be decreased to 30 months if the applicant has a job.
Macron argued that tackling the core problems with the far proper — safety and immigration — was the one technique to cease the Nationwide Rally, which is rising within the polls.
“If you wish to cease the Nationwide Rally coming to energy, you must deal with the issues which might be feeding it. And what’s feeding the Nationwide Rally is the impression that our solutions [on migration] are usually not environment friendly,” he mentioned.
Macron insisted he was engaged on precisely the kind of laws wanted to maintain the appropriate at bay.
“What we’re doing with Europe, the migration pact, and this legislation, will very clearly assist us battle trafficking networks, will assist us deport people who find themselves illegally on French soil … that’s what I name effectivity,” he added.