Emmanuel Macron just won a majority in France’s National Assembly, and it is a significant win that has raised several issues and debates in the country. Macron and his party La Republique En Marche! (LREM) won 43.06 percent of the vote in the second round of the legislative elections, which translates to 308 out of 577 seats.

French Presidential Candidate Emmanuel Macron
French Presidential Candidate Emmanuel Macron

Macron’s ally MoDem also won 42 seats, so in effect his support came from a total of 350 seats. This impressive victory leaves a single dominant party at the center without any strong opposition in the French parliament. Old archetypes of larger, older parties being at an advantage are not longer relevant. It has been an election of many firsts. It is the first time in modern French politics that no candidate from the traditional Republican and Socialist parties stood for the second round of the presidential elections.

It is worthwhile to take a look at Macron’s awe-inspiring win of the top seat and what led to it.

The Advantage Of Institution

Many factors contributed to advantages for Macron in the legislative elections. The elections came close at the heels of the presidential ballot and in such cases the population prefers a stable government. The voters would have wanted to avoid a cohabitation situation in which the president doesn’t have an assembly majority. Also, there were only four first ballot winners for the legislative elections, because voter turnout was low.

Traditional Party Decline

Macron was helped by the losses of the well-established political parties. The right-wing Les Republicans saw a lot of infighting and won 22.23 percent of the seats, coming in second after LREM. Macon may have played some smart politics to effect this, sowing the seeds of dissension by co-opting conservative leaders to his Cabinet.

The Parti Socialiste (PS) only won 29 seats (5.68 percent). Clearly, the voters were dissatisfied with the previous administration under president Francois Hollande, and this reflects in the anti-establishment elements that have cropped up in French politics recently.

Some of the new anti-establishment voices include Marine Le Pen of the Front National radical right wing party, and Jean Luc Melenchon of the France Insoumise (FI) radical left. Both parties won seats for the first time. While the parties are too small to affect policy changes, they are vocal and reflect the new wave that is blowing through French politics.

Macron’s Achievements

Russian President Vladimir Putin And French President Emmanuel Macron In Versailles
Russian President Vladimir Putin And French President Emmanuel Macron In Versailles

Macron ran as an outsider and didn’t have a lot of experience under his belt. But he has competently breezed through four elections since his appointment two months ago and has managed to become a figure that the French are pinning their hopes on.

He built his party around popular ideals including gender parity and political pluralism. At a time when the people of France are frustrated with the left/right system, Macron has brought change.

His MPs are leaders from the private sector and he has brought a powerful mandate for pro-business reforms that speak to the public.

As a French citizen it is fascinating to see how the government has brought about changes in the political landscape. But there’s a lot of pressure on it to deliver quick results. It remains to be seen if the new administration brings about the changes that it has promised, such as his visions for a EU after Brexit.