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Macron, a President by Default?

PARIS, May 7, 2017 (Nouvelle Solidarité)—This evening, Emmanuel Macron was elected President of the French Republic with an apparently whopping 65.8% of the vote against Marine Le Pen’s 34.2%. But as Presidential candidate Jacques Cheminade stated several times already, we’re heading for troubled times, because none of the candidates proposed fundamental changes, i.e., ending the financial dictatorship, reorienting the country towards areas of growth in the world, such as the BRICS alliance (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) and China’s Belt and Road Initiative.

The results themselves show how greatly the country is divided. First, the abstention rate hit a record 25.3%, the largest since 1969. Second, the number of "white" and "null" votes cast reached a huge 8.9%. That means that 4.2 million French voters actually decided to go to the voting polls but only to cast a white or null ballot; white is when the envelope is empty; null when the ballot has been torn or damaged.

In total, close to 16 million people voted for neither Macron nor Le Pen, and pollsters who questioned those casting the void (white or null) ballots said that many had expressed "a total rejection" for either of the two candidates. Furthermore, polls have revealed that both candidates were chosen by the electorate by "default." As many as 64% of those preparing to vote for Macron on the second round, were only doing so to vote against Le Pen. And that some 50% of those voting for Le Pen were only doing that to counter the election of Macron.

One could say that the victory is total for the French and Western Atlanticist and Europeanist oligarchy. Just a year ago, with their man François Hollande dropped so low in the polls that he couldn’t even run for a second term, it was almost guaranteed that the election would be won by the right-wing Les Républicains, or by Marine Le Pen, both of whom are, by the way, pro-Russian. Following the United Kingdom's vote to exit the European Union, and Trump’s victory in the United States, a similar break was hoped for in Europe and in France, in particular. But the awful corruption of François Fillon of Les Républicains, and the xenophobia and incompetence of the Le Pen clan, opened, quite the contrary, a wide window of opportunity for the young, brilliant and ambitious, ultra-liberal, Europeanist and Atlanticist Emmanuel Macron to fill the vacuum. Obviously the Atlanticists took advantage of their many weaknesses to block any further breaches in the Empire’s camp, and Obama moved in to support Macron with at least two telephone calls and finally a videotaped message of support for the candidate.

In the last week leading into the second round, the final debate between the two contenders, on May 3, showed clearly that neither of them represents an alternative for France. The debate was awful, in the style of the Trump/Clinton debates where invective and personal attacks replaced content and where even the promises of Trump for infrastructure reconstruction or Glass-Steagall were not made. Le Pen’s performance in particular totally ravaged her campaign, leading her to drop from 40% projected at that point to today’s 34.2% result. Acting under a profile of Macron given by an Italian psychiatrist, according to whom Macron was a young weakling full of fear of his mother, Le Pen, in pit-bull style, attacked him brutally trying to get him to crack. Macron didn’t react on profile, turned the game around and forced her to reveal that on the question of leaving the EU and the euro, i.e., the heart of her program, she was a bungling incompetent. At that debate, Macron himself admitted that he would pursue the deregulation of the labor market he started under Hollande when he passed a law that gives the right to a majority of workers in a single factory to override elements of the labor code in effect for the whole profession nationwide, or for branches of the profession. Millions took to the streets to demonstrate violently against this law.

The third round of the electoral process will occur in the upcoming legislative elections next June, for the renewal of the totality of the National Assembly. The four leading parties of the Presidential race have all announced they will be running full slates in those elections in the attempt to pursue the unconcluded race of the Presidential elections. Macron, who ran without a party support, will have to come up with a majority (288 out of 577 deputies) in the National Assembly either through his own movement, En Marche, or through alliances, if he wants to impose his policies.

Le Pen, in a brief speech after the announcement of the results, appeared upbeat and satisfied with her results, which in reality go beyond anything they had had so far. The 11 million votes they receuved, she said, make the Front National into the leading force of opposition to the globalizers in France. She announced the coming transformation of the FN into a new force able to have agreements with other parties, like the one she made with Nicolas Dupont Aignan at the end of the first round. Le Pen is forced now to go on the offensive, or die, because her liberal conservative opponents within the Front National, had said that under 40% of the vote, her more social and statist approach would be considered a defeat, and they would replace her with her much more liberal, and smarter niece, Marion Maréchal Le Pen, who wants to go for a liberal conservative alliance of all the right wing.

As for Macron, Jacques Cheminade said one should watch closely how he will operate, because while he has been brought to power by all the wrong forces, he himself is a kind of chameleon; and in the coming crisis, Macron, Le Pen, and the others will have to react to reality in ways that we haven’t seen so far.

At the end of the first round, Cheminade launched the idea of an alliance for progress and against the financial occupation forces, and he is preparing to go on tour to meet many of those who voted for him, to try to catalyze ferment for that idea.