Because after the elections the French Senate will make a civic opposition to Macron

Because after the elections the French Senate will make a civic opposition to Macron

How did the elections for the partial renewal of the French Senate go? Enrico Martial's point

On Sunday 27 September the elections for the partial renewal of the French Senate were held, which take place with the indirect system, on the basis of territorial colleges composed of local elected representatives. "To ensure the representation of the territorial communities of the Republic", in recent years the senators have found themselves occupying a significant political role, both for relations between the center and territories – as was the case for the positions taken on the Covid crisis – and for the specialty of the Macron Presidency, which occupies a large political space on the national level but not on the territorial one. The République en Marche has only 19 seats here, which it narrowly retained in these elections, which covered half the composition of the Senate, renewed every three years.

The traditional right – Les Républicains – has confirmed control over the upper house, with about ten additional seats – there are also independents – compared to the 76 confirmed, and would therefore pass to 154 members out of 354 senators. With the Union of the center, which has gained three, the majority reaches 172 members. The senate works with its own dynamics, which also pass through personal relationships and informal and transversal intergroups for major themes, such as the Atlantic coast and ports, fishing, rurality and the mountains, or transport backbones. The position on the right allows the Senate a political opposition to the Macron government with an independence of action that gained strength on the case of Alexandre Benalla (Macron's bodyguard accused of violence against demonstrators on May 1, 2018) or on the deadline of the Covid state of emergency in mid-July rather than late July, in agreement with the National Assembly.

Political opposition is tempered both by competences (the Senate votes about one legislative text out of four), and by the positioning of Les Républicains (considering that Christian Estrosi, Mayor of Nice on August 31, did not rule out support for Macron for a possible re-election), both from the habit of punctual exercise on policies and decisions, rather than on a political prejudice and a media debate. Even the radicalisms are limited: there is only one senator of the Rassemblement National of Marine Le Pen – Stéphane Ravier, of the Marseille department of the Mouths of the Rhone – some exponents of the Communist Party, from municipalities of the working class or from the Parisian belt, and a large number of independents, coming from backgrounds similar to our area civic lists. It should also be said that the greens, winners of several cities at the last municipal elections of March 15 and June 18 – including Bordeaux, Strasbourg, Marseille, Lyon – will be able to form a political group, with a total of 11 members compared to the previous 5 voted in 2017.

The political specialty of the Senate comes precisely from its composition. The constituencies composed almost entirely of municipal councilors, appointed by the councils of origin. For this round (it is precisely an indirect election), divided into 59 colleges, of which 5 overseas, involved in the partial renewal, it was 88,210 delegates from the municipal councils, together with 2434 departmental councilors, 1054 regional councilors, to the same 172 senators and 289 deputies. It is a representation that produces "civic" and municipal sensitivities for specific issues, for example in the field of civil rights, such as gender equality, or access to higher education (Senate initiative law of 23 December 2016), on protection of consumers (up to the costs of parking, but also with a loan law of 21 February 2017) or on the protection of people in the field of social media.

This is a machine translation from Italian language of a post published on Start Magazine at the URL on Mon, 28 Sep 2020 07:53:33 +0000.