Monday, September 25, 2017

The Senatorial Elections

REM sought in advance to interpret away the bad news it knew would be coming out of the senatorial elections. It's true that the Senate vote is generally a projection of the past onto the present, and since REM blasted away the past with its overwhelming victories in May and June, it was inevitable that the projected spirit of the antediluvian past would stand in sharp contrast. But it's also true that the mood has changed sharply since June, REM's "marche" has slowed to a crawl, and its failure to give much of a sign of life at all in the senatorials is fresh cause for worry.

The traditional right and center picked up 17 seats, the Socialists, with 80, lost only 6, and the Communists will be able to for a group. REM will have only 25 senators.

This is not a major setback for Macron, but there's no disguising the fact that it is a setback, and together with the disappointing German vote (see previous post), which weakened Merkel and therefore undercut German support for Macron, the president has new cause for worry and the opposition new warrant for seeing an opening that it would dearly love to exploit.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

A somewhat different read on REM's bad showing in the senate elections: it's a positive thing for REM and Macron to have this kind of defeat and at this moment. First, the senate elections are not crucial to Macron's program and strategy. Second, a clear defeat at this moment shows that Macron/REM don't walk on water and are not all powerful. If/when parliament votes up Macron's program, it will be seen as a rebound, i.e. renewed strength, rather than a steamroller. Third, those voters who considered Macron full of arrogance feel satisfied that they knocked him down a peg. Fourth, Macron's supporters may get energized again. None of this is certain but it stands to reason.