The peloton of announced and probable candidates for the Elysee Palace is currently leading with 27 percent support, followed by Valerie Pécress, a candidate of the right-wing Republicans (17 percent of the vote); behind them are far-right Marine Le Pen and Eric Zemmour (both with less than 15 percent).
Fortunately for Macron, who has not yet announced his defense, Zemmour refused to join Le Pen, which, according to the head of the National Unification, weakened their movement considerably.
Most politicians agree on the need to tighten anti-immigration policies
And a similar disagreement prevails in the left-wing spectrum. The Socialists, weakened by the inconspicuous President François Hollande, have not yet recovered, and the Communists reject an alliance with Jean-Luke Mélenchon’s Undefeated France.
Immigration, immigration and immigration again
Although there is no threat of a direct alliance between the right and the far right, as Zemmour blames and Marine Le Pen, who has been more moderate because of this, has long since clashed, but the fight for radicalized voters from the far spectrum has begun.
Most politicians are therefore talking about the need to tighten anti-immigration policies, and Macron apologized at the end of the year for some of the mistakes and “arrogant” actions that provoked the Yellow Vests movement, promising a more accommodating and moderate attitude towards critics.
His statements that he wanted to upset unvaccinated fellow citizens with a number of stricter measures were immediately attacked by the opposition as a failure or loss of nerves, because the statement “emmerder” can be translated more vulgarly. Rather, it was a thoughtful step. The French political scene (and not only that) has grown considerably – car setbacks and looting battles have become “common” folklore, not to mention Zemmour’s racist remarks – and it is therefore not easy to attract voters.
The government, which according to the far right is unable to deal with immigration (Zemmour even claims that France is experiencing “the second Algerian war in the heart of its territory”), must first and foremost demonstrate its ability to take radical action against the rapidly spreading omicron. And most – over 90 percent of those vaccinated in France – will appreciate it.
The opposition also blames Macron for dividing society, although the widening social divide between the poor and the rich promised to close Jacques Chirac by the end of the last century. Macron is aware that the main argument will be the state of the economy and living standards.
However, although Prime Minister Jean Castex recalled on TF1 that “purchasing power under President Macron has increased as in the previous two five-year plans,” the problem is, as the daily Les Echos wrote, that 56 percent of French people feel it has fallen.
Pilgrimage to Armenia
It seems that the tactics of the right and the far right are beginning to converge a lot. This is evidenced, for example, by the travels of Zemmour and Pécress to Armenia.
The visit of Christians to the Orient was intended not only to commemorate the Armenian genocide of the First World War, but also to indicate how an uncorrected relationship between Muslims and Christians could allegedly develop at home. However, the main goal was to reach the Armenian community in France, numbering up to 400,000 potential voters, and at the same time gain the support of local Catholics.
Pécress, who completed an internship in Moscow and visited Armenia during the 1990s while studying at ENA, a prestigious school for future politicians and elite officials, wanted to create the image of a politician with experience in foreign policy. She relies on an influential right-wing political party behind her and an attractive feminine element to politics.