Macron’s party wins de­ci­sive victory

Toronto Star - - NEWS -

PARIS— Pres­i­dent Em­manuel Macron of France won a cru­cial stamp of ap­proval on Sun­day as vot­ers gave him and his al­lies a de­ci­sive ma­jor­ity in par­lia­men­tary elec­tions, but a record-low turnout cast a shadow on his victory, point­ing to the hur­dles he will face as he seeks to re­vive the coun­try’s econ­omy and confidence.

As the polls closed at 8 p.m. Paris time, poll­sters pro­jected Macron’s party, La République En Marche (The Repub­lic on the Move), and its al­lies had won at least 355 seats in the 577-mem­ber Na­tional Assem­bly, the lower house of Par­lia­ment.

Macron, a rel­a­tive po­lit­i­cal new­comer elected on May 7, had called for a strong man­date to ad­vance his leg­isla­tive agenda, in­clud­ing plans to loosen France’s re­stric­tive labour laws.

Vot­ers swept in many first-time can­di­dates put for­ward by Macron’s party, in­clud­ing a record num­ber of women.

For the two main­stream par­ties, the out­come was a bleak re­pu­di­a­tion: The cen­tre-right Repub­li­cans were rel­e­gated to a dis­tant sec­ond place, with an es­ti­mated 125 mem­bers for its bloc in Par­lia­ment, while the So­cial­ists, who had a ma­jor­ity in the last elec­tion, saw their bloc re­duced to an es­ti­mated 49 seats.

Macron now “has all the power,” said Jean-Christophe Cam­badélis, who re­signed on Sun­day as head of the So­cial­ist Party.

A top Repub­li­can of­fi­cial, François Baroin, wished Macron “good luck” but said his party would con­tinue to be heard, as the largest op­po­si­tion party.

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