What a paradox! The National Assembly, while it should regain a central place in French political life due to the absence of an absolute majority for Emmanuel Macron, will only have been elected by less than one in two voters. The 54% abstention recorded on Sunday certainly does not beat the 2017 record (57.4%). It is nonetheless higher than the level of the first round, a week ago (52.5%). Our National Assembly is now less “well” elected than the European Parliament, whose election in 2019 suffered from an abstention of “only” 49.9%!
It is the limit of the dramatization of the ballot by the majority as by the left. It has undoubtedly avoided a massive withdrawal of voters in the face of an assured result, as in 2017 when the majority was promised 400 deputies (it had 351). But it was not enough to really mobilize the partisans of each other. In 1997, for example, the unexpected prospect of a victory for the plural left of Lionel Jospin reduced abstention by three points between the two rounds.
The Prime Minister had mentioned, on the evening of the first round, an overhaul of the institutions. Dissociating the legislative elections from the presidential elections, of which they are no more than a political “by-product”, is a possibility already mentioned by the President of the Republic. Establishing a more or less significant part of proportionality is another. Either way, it’s urgent.