Pop­u­lar­ity tum­bles for France’s Macron: Poll

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

A poll out yes­ter­day shows the pop­u­lar­ity rat­ing of France’s new Pres­i­dent Em­manuel Macron has slumped 10 points to hit 54 per­cent over the past month. While Macron has made a strong start on the world stage and won a solid ma­jor­ity in par­lia­ment, his first three months in power have not been com­pletely trou­ble-free.

He was widely crit­i­cized by op­po­nents and the press as heavy-handed af­ter a row over bud­get cuts that ended with the res­ig­na­tion of a highly-re­garded mil­i­tary chief. The 39-year-old leader has also backed a con­tro­ver­sial bill to toughen France’s se­cu­rity laws that in­cludes mea­sures some rights groups have branded as dra­co­nian. His ma­jor­ity in par­lia­ment has drawn con­cern, with op­po­nents and sev­eral news­pa­pers ex­press­ing con­cern over the con­cen­tra­tion of power in the pres­i­dency.

Ac­cord­ing to an Ifop poll car­ried out for Jour­nal du Di­manche news­pa­per, the num­ber of French peo­ple sat­is­fied with his per­for­mance fell 10 points from 64 per­cent in June. Macron’s Prime Min­is­ter Edouard Philippe marked an eight point drop to hit 56 per­cent of French peo­ple happy with him, said the poll of 1,947 adults car­ried out from July 17-22. France’s youngest-ever pres­i­dent, who has sought to project an im­age of au­thor­ity since tak­ing of­fice in May, made clear dur­ing the row with the mil­i­tary boss that he would brook no in­sub­or­di­na­tion as com­man­der-in-chief.

The left­ist Lib­er­a­tion news­pa­per said Macron’s “lit­tle au­thor­i­tar­ian fit” could be a sign he was drunk on power and said it was time for him “to grow up a bit”. A rel­a­tive new­comer to pol­i­tics who won elec­tion on a tide of dis­af­fec­tion with main­stream pol­i­tics, Macron has en­joyed a hon­ey­moon with vot­ers, draw­ing par­tic­u­lar praise for stand­ing up to US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump and Rus­sia’s Vladimir Putin.

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