French Prime Minister to Resign After Leftist Coalition Wins Parliamentary Majority in Snap Election

July 8, 2024 by No Comments

A far-left political coalition, formed unexpectedly before the election, is projected to win a majority of parliamentary seats, leading to the resignation of the country’s prime minister and an uncertain future for France.

French Prime Minister Gabriel Attal announced his resignation, effective Monday, as election results came in.

President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist alliance is projected to take the second-most seats, with the far-right coming in third.

Macron called the snap election just four weeks ago after the right-wing National Rally (RN) achieved significant success in the European Parliamentary elections in June. Pre-election polls indicated continued dominance by the RN, but more recent polling suggests those projections have diminished, leaving the RN short of a clear majority.

The first round of voting on June 30th resulted in 76 of the 577 constituencies in the French National Assembly determining their representative. Candidates who did not secure an outright majority in the first round advanced to a second-round runoff, held on Sunday.

Before the election, France was poised to elect the RN as the largest party in government, although the possibility of no single party emerging with a clear majority in the closely contested election remained.

As results began to emerge, projections shifted towards the left, indicating a lack of majority for any single alliance and potentially plunging France into economic and political turmoil.

Final results are not expected until late Sunday or early Monday.

Macron’s gamble in calling for a snap election appears to have backfired, as projections show his unpopularity and his alliance losing control of parliament.

While the far-right RN significantly increased its number of parliamentary seats, the results fell short of their expectations.

Far-left leader Jean-Luc Mélenchon urged Macron to invite the leftist New Popular Front coalition to form a government, given their projected lead.

Macron stated he would “wait for the new National Assembly to organize itself” before making any decisions.

A hung parliament, where no single bloc comes close to achieving the 289 seats needed for an absolute majority in the National Assembly (the more powerful of France’s two legislative chambers), would represent uncharted territory for modern France.

France lacks a tradition of lawmakers from rival political camps collaborating to form a working majority.

If the projections are confirmed by official counts, they will signify intense uncertainty for a key pillar of the European Union and its second-largest economy. The situation remains unclear as to who might partner with Macron as prime minister in governing France.

Digital’s Peter Aitken and