What are the reasons Macron failed?

I was first excited when he won the election. Compared to many right-wing wins in other European countries, he promised some hope. But turned out to be a not-nice guy…

A curation: 

Emmanuel Macron’s political challenges and perceived failures in France can be attributed to a combination of strategic missteps, policy decisions, and broader socio-political dynamics. Here are the key reasons:

Strategic Missteps

  1. Dissolution of the National Assembly: Macron’s decision to dissolve the National Assembly and call for snap elections backfired. This move not only dissolved his majority but also created political chaos, leading to a fragmented parliament and weakening his political base[4][6][8].
  2. Shift to the Right: Macron’s strategy of shifting towards right-wing policies to counter Marine Le Pen’s National Rally (RN) inadvertently strengthened the far-right. His focus on law and order, immigration, and Islamism alienated many voters and emboldened Le Pen’s base[5][8].

Policy Decisions

  1. Retirement Age Reform: Macron’s attempt to raise the retirement age sparked widespread protests and public fury. This policy was seen as favoring the wealthy and out of touch with the needs of ordinary citizens[3].

  2. Economic Policies: Macron has often been labeled as the “president for the rich,” with policies perceived to benefit the wealthy at the expense of the working class. This perception has fueled discontent and protests, particularly in economically struggling regions[3][7].

Socio-Political Dynamics

  1. Alienation of Political Extremes: Macron’s centrist approach, which aimed to blend policies from both the left and the right, ended up alienating both sides. This technocratic approach failed to transform the political landscape and instead reinforced the appeal of populist leaders on both extremes[4][8].

  2. Social Injustice and Contempt: There is a pervasive feeling of social injustice and contempt among the French populace. Many feel that their efforts are not recognized or rewarded, leading to a sense of disenfranchisement and mistrust in the government[7].

  3. Rise of Populism: The broader European trend of rising populism has also impacted France. Leaders like Marine Le Pen have capitalized on economic insecurities and fears about immigration, drawing significant support from regions with high unemployment and low disposable income[3][5].

Personal Style and Leadership

  1. Haughty and Imperious Style: Macron’s leadership style has been described as haughty and imperious, which has not endeared him to the public. His self-perception as a philosopher-king and his technocratic governance approach have made him an exceptionally polarizing figure[4].

  2. Failure to Build a Sustainable Political Movement: Macron’s political movement, initially successful, failed to evolve into a sustainable party independent of his personal charisma. This dependency on a single leader has made the movement vulnerable as his popularity waned[4][8].

In summary, Macron’s failures stem from a combination of strategic errors, controversial policy decisions, socio-political challenges, and personal leadership style. These factors have collectively weakened his political standing and emboldened his opponents on both the left and right.

[1] https://www.barrons.com/news/macron-s-failure-european-media-react-to-french-vote-b14f0f91
[2] https://www.japantimes.co.jp/commentary/2024/07/02/world/failure-emmanuel-macron-france-elections/
[3] https://news.sky.com/story/france-election-marine-le-pen-on-the-brink-of-power-as-emmanuel-macrons-big-gamble-looks-set-to-fail-13160482
[4] https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/why-macronism-failed-by-jan-werner-mueller-2024-07
[5] https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/article/2024/jun/25/emmanuel-macron-marine-le-pen-france-far-right-government
[6] https://www.lemonde.fr/en/politics/article/2024/07/01/macron-s-brutal-dissolution-of-the-assemblee-resulted-in-the-dissolution-of-his-majority_6676300_5.html
[7] https://www.lemonde.fr/en/politics/article/2024/02/13/the-french-s-feeling-of-injustice-reveals-macron-s-failure-to-bring-about-a-merit-based-society_6521747_5.html
[8] https://www.lemonde.fr/en/politics/article/2024/06/25/macronism-has-failed-because-its-claim-to-be-better-than-the-right-and-left-at-resisting-the-rn-s-rise-has-proved-ineffective_6675698_5.html

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