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190,000 Sign Petition To Stop First Lady Office In France |The Republican News

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                 President-elect Macron; and wife, Brigitte.

More than 190,000 people have expressed their opposition toward French President Emmanuel Macron’s initiative to create an official First Lady status for his wife, Brigitte Macron, as of Monday morning.

The online petition was published on the change.org platform and created by Thierry Paul Valette, the founder of the “national equality” movement.

The organisation’s aim is to combat corruption and discrimination.

The petition specifies that, if enacted, the special status would allow the first lady benefit from the French budget.

Having an office, staff and an allowance from the public purse are examples of some such benefits.

During his presidential campaign, Macron, who took office in May, said that he wanted to create the position for his wife in order to clarify her status, promising that no public funds would be used to pay her.

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France’s Macron Appoints 50% Women In His Cabinet, Many Are Political Outsiders

Emmanuel Macron attends a funeral for French Socialist party (PS) lawmaker Corinne Erhel, (10 May)Image copyrightAFP. The president-elect had made several conditions for candidates to sign up to

 

The party of French President-elect Emmanuel Macron has selected a diverse list of 428 candidates for parliamentary elections next month.

Only 24 of those chosen are outgoing MPs from the current parliament.

Some 52% come from civil society and exactly half are women, the secretary-general of La République En Marche (Republic on the Move) said.

Richard Ferrand said the choices marked “the definitive return of citizens to the heart of our political life”.

Mr Macron still needs to select more than 100 candidates for the 577-seat parliament and the party says its door is open to politicians from other parties to join.

Youngest is 24

The movement received more than 19,000 applications, Mr Ferrand said at a news conference, with 1,700 telephone interviews conducted with candidates.

The average age of the list is 46 “compared to 60 years for the average of outgoing MPs”, he said.

The youngest candidate is 24 years old, while the oldest is 72. Around 10 candidates are unemployed, double that are retired and a handful are students.

Cedric VillaniImage copyrightAFP. On the list: Cédric Villani, a famous mathematician, made the cut

All of the outgoing MPs chosen to run come from the Socialist Party of departing President François Hollande.

Mr Ferrand confirmed that Mr Macron’s ex-cabinet colleague Manuel Valls – the former prime minister who has now burned his boats with his Socialists – had not been selected.

He said that he did “not meet the criteria” because he had already served three parliamentary terms.

But the party will not be running a candidate against him in his constituency in Essonne, south of Paris.

France had been waiting to see if the party list would live up to Mr Macron’s pledge to clean up France’s public life.

Who are they?

Many of the candidates are unknown to the public and there are few well-known personalities on the list.

Among the diverse candidates is Cédric Villani, a famous mathematician with a penchant for flamboyant bow-ties and spider brooches. He won the Fields Medal – seen as one of the highest honours in mathematics – in 2010.

Jean-Michel Fauvergue, head of the RAID, the French national police intervention group, poses during a public exercise in front of the Chateau de Versailles, outside Paris, on October 11, 2014Image copyrightAFP. Elite police commander Jean-Michel Fauvergue is a candidate

François Hollande’s communications advisor Gaspard Gantzer, former judge Éric Halphen and former bullfighter Marie Sara are also on the list.

Although no MPs of the Republican party are candidates, at least two former allies of Alain Juppé – who lost the centre-right party’s presidential primary – have been selected.


Where’s the right? Analysis: BBC’s Hugh Schofield in Paris

It has escaped no-one’s attention that there are nearly 150 names still missing.

Why this lack of clarity? Why the delay? Why is Mr Macron’s party unable to do what it said it would do and give the country the full roster of names?

The answer is that it is engaged in some very old-style political calculation.

Emmanuel Macron knows that his weak point is his connection with the outgoing regime. He is a socialist at heart, as he has often said, and made his name serving a Socialist Party president.

If his party goes into the election fielding too many ex-Socialist MPs, it will be a sitting target for a vengeful Republican Party, eager to get its own majority and force the new president into a “cohabitation” (where the government is of a different colour from the president).

So the party wants a few more days to tempt over Republican Party defectors. Only in the middle of next week will it draw up its definitive list.   (BBC)

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Trump To Meet Macron In Brussels On 25 May |The Republican News

“President Trump has made his wish known to work extensively with the elected president Macron to meet shared challenges. He also emphasized the long and strong tradition of cooperation between the US and its oldest ally, France,”.

Trump had  congratulated Macron on Sunday in a tweet for his “big victory”.

According to his spokesman Sean Spicer, Trump on Monday also called the French president-elect to congratulate him.               (BELGA)

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BREAKING: Macron Wins France Presidential Election, Five Challenges For Him

 

Valérie LEROUX
Emmanuel Macron faces a challenge to heal a divided country

President -elect, Emmanuel Macron

© Provided by AFP Emmanuel Macron faces a challenge to heal a divided country

Emmanuel Macron, who exit polls say won France’s presidential elections on Sunday, may have seen off the competition in the race for the Elysee Palace but will face daunting challenges when he takes office.The 39-year-old must unite a deeply-divided country, roll back unemployment and try to nudge a fractious EU along the path of reform — but he first faces a battle to secure a governing majority in legislative elections due next month.

– Reunite France –

Macron, a pro-European centrist and former banker, takes over a divided country where nearly half of voters backed extremist candidates — critical of the EU, globalisation and “elites” — in the first round of the election.

The “two Frances” are divided geographically — one urban, more affluent and open to reform; the other, concentrated in the northern rustbelt and in disadvantaged areas of the countryside. It was this latter France that voted for Macron’s far-right opponent, Marine Le Pen.

Macron knows that many voters backed him not out of conviction but simply to stop Le Pen taking power, and his support could evaporate at the parliamentary elections.

“Will the Macron-Le Pen divide — which is a national, existential identity divide, not the usual left-right split — continue into the legislative election? I tend to think so,” said analyst Stephane Rozes of the CAP thinktank.

– The impossible majority? –

Macron has promised to move beyond traditional left and right parties to create a new majority in the centre.

He launched his En Marche! (On the Move) party less than a year ago but managed to attract hundreds of thousands of supporters. He finished first in the first round of the election with a quarter of the vote. In the runoff against Le Pen, he notched up almost two-thirds of the vote, according to exit polls.

Now he must convert his extraordinary rise — unprecedented in recent French history — into a solid presence in the National Assembly.

After his success in the presidential race, Macron believes that the French people will give him another victory in parliamentary elections, which will take place on June 11 and 18.

But the traditional centre-right, whose candidate Francois Fillon crashed out in the first round amid a fake jobs scandal, hopes to strike back and force Macron into a coalition arrangement in parliament.

The far left, emboldened by the first-round success of candidate Jean-Luc Melenchon, who took an unexpectedly high 19.6 percent, is also aiming for a strong showing.

– Labour law battle –

Macron has lamented France’s failure to solve its unemployment problem.

French joblessness runs at 10 percent, which compares with an average of 8.0 percent across the EU and just 3.9 percent in neighbouring Germany.

Like his predecessors, Macron will be judged above all on employment, and he has vowed to force through reform of France’s hidebound labour laws using executive orders during his first months in office.

This accelerated procedure, bypassing parliament, could mean a fiery start to his term as France’s highly activist unions would likely bring protests out onto the streets, as they did last year when Socialist Prime Minister Manuel Valls used the tactic.

Macron wants to cut unemployment to seven percent by 2022 by liberalising employment laws, cutting business rates and loosening restrictions in France’s 35-hour working week.

– Terror threat –

The killing of a policeman on the Champs-Elysees in central Paris just three days before the first-round vote was a sobering reminder of the terror threat hanging over France.

More than 230 people have been killed in jihadist attacks in France since January 2015, many carried out in the name of the Islamic State (IS) group.

“IS is open about its desire to smash national cohesion by exacerbating tensions between Muslims and the rest of the population,” said Marc Hecker of the French Institute of International Relations.

Hecker pointed to the dangers posed by hundreds of French IS fighters returning home from Syria and Iraq in the coming years.

With no previous experience in such matters, Macron has to move quickly to show he has a grip on these challenges and his role as military commander-in-chief.

General Jean-Paul Palomeros, who advised Macron, predicted that France’s military commitments in the Middle East and Africa would continue unchanged.

Macron has also said he wants to reinforce the EU’s external borders and has called for a major increase in resources for the Frontex agency.

– EU reform –

Macron sees a reinvigoration of the France-Germany alliance as crucial to relaunching the EU after the shocks of Brexit and the migrant crisis.

He plans to tour European capitals during his first months in charge to set out a “five-year roadmap to give the eurozone a true budget and to create a Europe of 27 for the environment, industry and managing migration”.

Vincenzo Scarpetta, analyst at Open Europe, warned Macron may be biting off more than he can chew.

“Reforming the EU looks good on paper but Macron’s ideas are bold: he wants a budget for the eurozone and a eurozone minister. Is that really realistic, when it would require treaty changes?” Scarpetta said.

Macron has also said he is determined to develop European defence by coordinating operations and industrial programmes in this area.  (AFP)

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Marine Le Pen Steps Down As Leader Of France’s National Front Party

French presidential candidate Marine Le Pen announced Monday she is temporarily stepping down as head of her National Front party with less than two weeks ago before the country chooses its leader in a runoff vote.

The move appears to be a way for Le Pen to embrace a wide range of potential voters ahead of the vote pitting her against Emmanuel Macron, the independent centrist who came in first in Sunday’s first round, The Associated Press reported.

LEFTIST PROTESTERS SPARK VIOLENCE AFTER ELECTION RESULTS ROLL IN

“Tonight, I am no longer the president of the National Front. I am the presidential candidate,” she said on French public television news.

Greg Palkot details the close race in the French presidential campaign© FoxNews.com Greg Palkot details the close race in the French presidential campaign

 

Le Pen has said in the past that she is not a candidate of her party, and made that point when she rolled out her platform in February, saying the measures she was espousing were not her party’s, but her own.

She also has tried to distance herself numerous times from a string of controversial comments by her father, Jean-Marie Le Pen, who founded the party before being kicked out in 2015.

Le Pen has worked to bring in voters from the left and right for several years, cleaning up her party’s racist, anti-Semitic image to do so.

(FOX News)

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