The Elysée has announced that Macron will address the nation live on TV at 8pm on Wednesday.
Since losing his majority in Sunday’s parliamentary elections, he has been holding talks with party leaders in an attempt to build a ‘national unity government’ that will allow him to pass legislation through parliament during the five years of his second term as president.
Macron and his team have the option of either forming an alliance with another group in parliament, or with ruling in a minority government and seeking alliances with MPs on a vote-by-vote basis.
The new parliament meets for the first time on Tuesday, June 28th, and Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne will set out the government’s priorities on July 5th, which is also when a motion of no-confidence against her government could be brought in parliament.
The situation has called into question Macron’s plans for reform in his second term after his April presidential re-election — including a key measure to raise the retirement age — and risks denting his international stature.
Macron, who until now has kept a careful public silence on the deadlock, will make a televised address at 8pm, his office announced on Wednesday afternoon.
Over the past two days he has hosted rare talks at the Elysée Palace with opposition leaders to find a way out of the crisis.
He met the head of the far-right Rassemblement National Marine Le Pen on Tuesday, while the head of the left-wing Nupes alliance, hard-leftist Jean-Luc Mélenchon, sent MP Adrien Quatennens, 32, to represent him in talks on Wednesday in a clear snub to the president.
The meetings so far appear to have made little headway, and Macron has also rejected an offer from under-fire PM Elisabeth Borne to resign.
“The unfindable compromise? Emmanuel Macron is trying to regain the initiative but no consensus has been found,” said the right-wing Le Figaro daily.
Macron’s intervention Wednesday will be crucial for indicating his future strategy, especially as he is to be distracted by foreign policy and outside of France for much of the next week.
He is due to attend an EU summit on Thursday and Friday, then the G7 summit in Germany from Sunday and then the NATO summit in Madrid from Tuesday.
Former prime minister Edouard Philippe, whose Horizons party is part of Macron’s alliance, told BFM television late Tuesday that a “grand coalition” should now be formed.
“We need to hear what the voters have said and take them seriously,” he said.
Communist party chief Fabien Roussel, who is part of the NUPES alliance and held talks with Macron on Tuesday, said after the meeting that the president had evoked a “government of national unity” as a way out of the impasse.
Speaking as she introduced new MPs at parliament on Wednesday, Le Pen said the president had floated the same idea with her.
Olivier Véran, the minister in charge of relations with parliament, told BFM on Wednesday that “all options” were on the table. But he ruled out working with Le Pen or Melenchon to find a majority.
The Local will be following the speech live from 8pm, click HERE for the latest updates.