Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Macron’s fate is in the hands of suburban voters


Dionor Exlant, mayor of Veletanos in the northwestern Paris suburbs, will do his democratic duty and vote when President Emmanuel Macron faces his rival, Marine Le Pen, in the decisive second round for the presidency on Sunday, April 24.

Exlant, 46, is not as happy as many of the 12,000 voters who voted the most (65%) in the city. Most of them supported Jean-Luc Mélenchon, the leader of the far-left “France Broad” party, (70), who was narrowly eliminated as he won third place in the first round.

“This is not a vote of condemnation because I do not believe in Macron’s extreme liberal policies,” said the Haitian-born mayor. “It’s about responsibility. But Marine Le Pen’s plan is racist, racist and anti-Muslim, so I have no hesitation in voting for Macron.”

Armed with a large number of leaflets, Exlant planned to take to the streets of his hometown this weekend, urging those around him to do the same. The suburbs of French cities across the country have a population of 7.7 million, and they can actually determine the political fate of France.

Macron (44), who has had great success in recent days, has slightly increased his lead over Le Pen, with 27.8% in the first round, while his opponent has 23.1%. The latest Ifop poll expects him to beat 53.5% to 46.5%.

Lean away

At a rally in Marseille a few days ago in the presence of thousands of supporters, the president portrayed the election war as “the choice of civilization: to create a future together or to endanger it.” He warned of the “danger to our country” posed by 53-year-old Le Pen for most of his speech, whom he rarely mentions by name, but rather as an “extreme right-wing candidate.” He sought to impress young, left-wing voters.

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Le Pen responded by calling for the formation of an “anti-Macron Front”. But attempts by the far right to soften its image by focusing on the cost-of-living crisis in France have been thwarted by controversy over the helmet. She stressed last week that women should not be worn in public, and threatens to bring divisive ideas back to the center.

Who are these 7.7 million Kingmakers?

Analyzes indicate that they are young suburban residents. Mlenchon was the most popular candidate among voters under the age of 35 across the country, receiving nearly a third of their votes. This category also includes a large number of minorities; About 69% of voters – one in five million Muslims in France or more – support the senior left. They are also much poorer than average, with many of them living in the suburbs around Paris and other major cities. The majority of Mன்சlenchon’s votes in the country, 49%, came from the Seine-Saint-Denis suburb north of Paris, home to 1.7 million people. No place voted for him other than the suburbs of Veletonos on the western edge.

Even though the train is only eight minutes drive from Gardner Station north of the capital, it feels like a different world. There are many small buildings around the big French cities, and next to them are small houses like villages. It is located in the heart of the Veletanos, modern town hall and Sorbonne campus, providing much of the work. The recently opened Lidl Shopping Center has become one of the few resources for private sector jobs.

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Election responsibility

The mayor of the municipality, elected in 2020, pointed out the statistics showing the challenges facing the city; Including the unemployment rate, which is two times higher than the national average, and three times higher than other regions; And low educational attainment, 65% of the population lives in community housing.

Exland believes that these combined factors are behind the voter turnout for M மெlenchon, who “seemed to be responding better to the social and economic problems in these areas, which are memorable, but less important and not considered by the government. Priority.” All of this could make it harder for Macron to win the suburban vote.

Voter Cheryl Lellop, who works on education programs and voted for the far-left candidate, backed Macron in the second round on 26, 2017, but was considering last week whether he would do so again. “Macron looked young at the time and had a new plan,” Lolop said. “He handled the epidemic well, but after five years as president, I’m still wondering what to do. But I still have time to make a decision.

Max Cross, 62, Mellonson’s party, which has become a communist, can not trust itself to vote for the current president, even if it leads to Le Pen’s victory. Cross decided to cancel his ballot, saying, “If (Le Pen) comes to power it will not be my responsibility, but it’s the fault of those who voted for him.”

Such a feeling would help reduce the turnout to 73.7% in the first round. It was very low by French standards. It will not be easy as the minority (but greater number) voters will be forced to choose two candidates. Whoever wins, some fear that the votes could follow the French-style third round: street protests. In fact, thousands of people staged protests against Le Pen in Paris and other cities a few days ago.

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நகரம் Although the city of “Velidanos” is eight minutes by train from the “Gardner” station north of the capital, it looks like a different world.

Attempts by Marine Le Pen to beautify his image and focus on the cost of living crisis in France failed.

7.7 million people live in the suburbs of French cities across the country.

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Bill Dittman
Bill Dittman
"Freelance alcohol fan. Coffee maven. Musicaholic. Food junkie. Extreme web expert. Communicator."

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