New York: French President Emmanuel Macron refused to accept his prime minister’s resignation and met with opposition leaders as he sought a way out of a political predicament after losing his parliamentary majority.
Macron’s alliance Ensemble won 245 seats in last week’s elections, falling short of the 289 seats required for an absolute majority, reports Xinhua news agency.
Macron’s opponents said it was time he learned to listen to others and that support would come at a cost. Christian Jacob, leader of the conservative Les Republicains, said Macron had been “arrogant” during his first term.
“We’re not going to betray those who showed faith in us. Those who voted for us did not do so so that we enter with little thought into any old coalition,” Jacob told reporters.
Jacob made his remarks after holding an hour-long meeting with Macron.
No easy solution appears to be at hand, and soon Macron will be distracted by a week of international meetings abroad, including EU, G7, and NATO summits.
If Macron and his alliance fail to secure support, France could face a long spell of political gridlock that may, later on, compel Macron to dissolve parliament and call a new election.
Macron was reelected in April on an agenda including measures to boost purchasing power, tax cuts, and raising the minimum retirement age from 62 to 65.