BEverything is going according to the plan that Emmanuel Macron announced after the electoral defeat for his party in the local elections. Prime Minister Edouard Philippe submitted a resignation request on Friday, which the President accepted. The head of government continues to do business until the new government team is in place. “In the next few hours” that should be the case, the President has informed the AFP news agency.
At first he had given himself more time and wanted to present the new cabinet list “by Wednesday”. In a conversation published on Friday with several French regional newspapers, he expressly praised his excellent cooperation with the head of government: “He has been by my side for three years and has done an excellent job with different governments, leading important and historical reforms under often very difficult conditions. “The President added:” I have to make decisions to start a new path. There will be a new team for that. ”
As the regional newspapers explained, a first version of the interview was changed by the Elysée Palace. When asked whether his relationship with Philippe had ended, Macron replied: “On the contrary.” The 49-year-old Philippe, who was still fighting for the Republicans in the presidential election campaign, is very popular in the country. In his hometown of Le Havre in Normandy, 58 percent of the voters voted for him in the local elections. Philippe’s calm and level-headed manner stood out from Macron’s appearances during the pandemic.
There is already speculation that Philippe could become a serious rival for Macron in the presidential election. According to a recent poll, 57 percent of French people want Philippe to remain head of government. But Macron has spread rumors that he wants to nominate a woman. There have been no women leaders in France since Edith Cresson in 1991. Cresson was nominated at the time because President Mitterrand himself wanted to run the government. The experiment, which lasted eleven months, is a daunting example. According to speculative reports, Macron is now planning to make Defense Minister Florence Parly head of government. The 57-year-old former socialist has had a career with Air France and the State Railways SNCF. Her only attempt to win the favor of voters failed in the 2002 parliamentary elections. As Minister of Defense, she stood out due to her close connection to the Elysée Palace.