Polls show that the president continues to be the main preference of the French, although 64% are dissatisfied with his work
French President Emmanuel Macron is running for re-election after five years in power. The citizens judge his mandate harshly. 64% are “dissatisfied” with his work, while 30% say they are “satisfied”, according to a recent YouGov poll. Macron, who starts as a favorite in the voting intention polls, has not had an easy time in the Elysée Palace. From the ‘yellow vests’ to the war in Ukraine, through the health crisis, his five-year term in power has been marked by crisis. “They have forged me and my energy is intact,” Macron assured this week in an interview with the newspaper ‘Le Figaro’ before the first round of the elections, which take place this Sunday.
The crisis of the ‘yellow vests’ began in October 2018 as a protest, especially in rural France, against the rise in fuel prices. The reflective garment worn by the protesters became a symbol of the tiredness of citizens who struggle to make ends meet and demand an improvement in purchasing power.
The ‘yellow vests’ occupied roundabouts, organized protests and paralyzed the entire country. The scenes of violence went around the world and put Macron’s presidency in check. They reached 287,000 people across France on November 17, 2018. The president was reluctantly forced to make concessions. For example, he suspended the fuel tax hike.
Macron has also had to face several terrorist attacks, including the one perpetrated at the Strasbourg Christmas market in 2018, the one that targeted the Paris Prefecture in 2019 and the beheading at the hands of an Islamist in 2020 of the secondary school teacher, Samuel Paty, for teaching his students the controversial cartoons of Muhammad in class.
Like other world leaders, Macron had to deal with the health crisis due to the Covid-19 pandemic. He imposed the mask and the certificate to enter numerous public places. At the worst moment of the crisis, he confined the country. He applied his “whatever it takes” policy. That is, spend all the public money necessary to prevent the collapse of the French economy in the worst of the pandemic. The anti-vaccine movement organized numerous protests against Macron’s “health dictatorship”.
war in ukraine
The Russian invasion has robbed Macron of more sleep than the election campaign. From the rotating presidency of the European Union, he tried to mediate between Moscow and kyiv. After the unilateral aggression against Ukraine, he keeps the channel open with Vladimir Putin, whom he tries to convince to end the conflict, withdraw his troops, open humanitarian corridors and allow access for humanitarian aid.