Emmanuel Macron seeks to take the pulse of France


Emmanuel Macron launches the “one young person, one tree” program, with students in the forest of Moirans-en-Montagne (Jura), on November 24, 2023.

This November 19, with the breakfast kiwi, Emmanuel Macron examines the Sunday press. The monthly barometer produced by the IFOP in partnership with The Sunday Journalis relegated to ” footer “ of the weekly, he gets annoyed on the Telegram thread where he communicates with his advisors. But the head of state has gained popularity, particularly affecting 18-34 year olds who welcome his ” wisdom “ and his “balance position” in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Is this not proof that the widely commented decision of the President of the Republic not to go to the civic march against anti-Semitism the previous Sunday, while condemning the “bearers of hatred” was the right one? “It validates”he wrote to his colleagues.

In a France under tension after the Hamas terrorist attack against the Hebrew state on October 7, and the Islamist attack barely a week later against a professor in Arras (Pas-de-Calais), Dominique Bernard, the head of state scrutinizes the polls, opinion studies and the regional press, keen to avoid a misstep.

Her special advisor at the Elysée, Frédéric Michelbrings him up “weak signals” from the government information service. “The Middle East conflict is very little present in the regions, we must take it into account”explains the latter, who thus defines the “creed” of the president: make society more “serene”.

The concerns of the Paris market are not always those which agitate the “France below”, which was conceptualized by former Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin. And the Elysée, where Emmanuel Macron has resided since 2017, is isolating. Emmanuel Macron cannot ignore this, he who was surprised, a year after his first election, by the fury of the “yellow vests” and stunned by the urban riots of this summer. “It is very difficult to sense things from the presidential palace. It’s a place where you don’t even hear the noise of the street, metaphorically that says a lot”underlines Gaspard Gantzer, former communications advisor to François Hollande.

“Appease the French”

How, then, to maintain a link with French people that sociologists describe “lively” ? “Society is scattered. Social cl or age group benchmarks no longer work. The Elysée swallows the polls but they struggle to reflect the complexity of reality”warns Philippe Moati, co-founder of Obsoco, a strategy research and consulting company.

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