Macron's party has discovered the environment

The candidates for Macron's party La République en Marche are presenting their agenda for the EU elections this Thursday. Instead of governmental politics the focus has clearly shifted to environmental protection. The positions on immigration are also less tough than Macron's stance to date. Commentators question the credibility of this new direction.

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Le Figaro (FR) /

Bid to secure the lead begins

Macron's party has changed its tune and Le Figaro explains why:

“With [the leading conservative candidate] François-Xavier Bellamy gradually winning back the voter base on the right, the president's friends know that they are not the most convincing when it comes to the border issue. And now that [the leader of the greens] Yannick Jadot is nearing ten percent, they have realised that environmental protection is in demand, in particular with the younger generation which is underrepresented in the En Marche party (just nine percent of 18 to 24-year olds). ... Such hardheadedness at the end of the European campaign looks like a last-ditch attempt to play catchup. With an offensive that is directed at young, left-leaning and cosmopolitan voters, the Macronists want to regain the lead which is currently under threat from Jordan Bardella's [far-right] RN list.”

Libération (FR) /

Political ploy or conviction?

The recent rush to go green by France's president and his party has Libération raising an eyebrow:

“Is this declaration of commitment to the environment sincere, if a bit late, or merely pragmatic lip service that is more political ploy than political conviction? With the EU elections just around the corner one may legitimately doubt the president's good faith. For several months now it has been clear that climate protection is one of the issues that will secure votes on 26 May. ... So let's assume that Emmanuel Macron is now conflating liberalism with environmentalism. But it doesn't matter how many promises he makes, people will only be convinced by concrete action.”