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In Saint-Denis, facing Emmanuel Macron, the oppositions without illusions or connivance

It is called the "princes' room".

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In Saint-Denis, facing Emmanuel Macron, the oppositions without illusions or connivance

It is called the "princes' room". A very pretty room nestled in the left wing of the prestigious education house of the Legion of Honor, a boarding house for young girls created in 1805 by Napoleon Bonaparte. It is there, in Seine-Saint-Denis, that Emmanuel Macron invited the presidents of parties represented in Parliament on Wednesday as part of his “great political initiative”. It is also there, for the record, that the teachers of the establishment usually meet during the famous class councils.

For several hours, Emmanuel Macron and his opponents will be seated at the same table under the watchful eye of the Emperor and the Grand Chancellors of the Legion of Honor, whose portraits are enthroned on the stone walls. They will discuss behind closed doors the three themes chosen by the Head of State: the international, the reform of institutions and, finally, "how to make a nation?".

Cell phones have been banned, employees will be absent. The oppositions, although skeptical about this meeting which they suspect to be a pure communication operation, have prepared themselves. "Just the fact that they agreed to participate, it's well done", enthused before the meeting a close friend of the president.

“There are two essential subjects: I will ask him for a significant gesture for the purchasing power of the French (…) and the holding of a major referendum on immigration”, affirmed the president of the Rassemblent national, Jordan Bardella. , on BFMTV. For his part, the boss of the Republicans, Éric Ciotti, devoted his morning to finishing the development of the themes he intended to address, and called one last time the tenors of the party, in particular the leaders of the deputies and senators. LR, Olivier Marleix and Bruno Retailleau, in order to arrive “ready”.

During his introduction, Éric Ciotti had planned to denounce a “crisis of democratic representation”, considering the referendum as the only tool that can remedy the “crisis of political confidence” experienced by the French, said a relative. President LR also intended to address “special subjects” such as secularism at school, security, decentralization, the Franco-Moroccan relationship and, of course, immigration. A vast program which has also made the boss of the right say that at this rate it would not be surprising to “finish at 2 am”.

In Cannet (Alpes-Maritimes), on the occasion of the return of the Republicans on Sunday, Éric Ciotti wanted to send a message to Emmanuel Macron: LR, although responsible, remains in the opposition. “There will be no collusion this afternoon,” insists those around him.

If Éric Ciotti accepted the invitation of the Head of State, it is “to say that the palaver has lasted too long!”. In front of the militants, he had warned: “I will say to the President of the Republic: if you want things to move forward, then take our proposals. They are here, they are ready. Stop procrastinating. Let's act!” On the eve of the arrival of the immigration bill, on which the right and the executive are struggling to find an agreement, this is clear. Éric Ciotti also intended to address what, until now, has blocked discussions: article 3 of the government text, which provides for the regularization of illegal immigrants in "short-term occupations". “We have been hearing for a few days that the majority would be ready to take a step, slips a close friend of President LR. We are hopeful that things will change.”

Hope, on the other hand, is not really in the Nupes. The four representatives of the left parties, Manuel Bompard (LFI), Marine Tondelier (EELV), Olivier Faure (PS) and Fabien Roussel (PCF), arrived together in Saint-Denis. “We are summoned to a very vague agenda, without even knowing whether the president will respond or not,” regretted the socialist first secretary. No question, however, of not going to “carry (their) convictions” in front of Emmanuel Macron. “Whenever he agrees with our beliefs, we will be ready to move forward… But from our first indications, we do not have the feeling that he has understood much.” “If his right ear works well, judged Faure, we have the feeling that his left ear is down.”

Number two of LFI and MP for Marseille, Manuel Bompard does not bother with nuances. “We are here to tell him how much his policy is hurting the country, he warned before entering the meeting room. But also to bring him a number of proposals. Fourteen of them are worn with EELV and the PS. The first, to “appease the country”, being to “suspend the publication of the implementing decrees for the pension reform”.

Disagreeing, among other things, on the proposal for an "in-depth reform of the national police" with "a different analysis of what happened last summer" during the riots, the Communists - who still praise "a mix energy" in the nuclear field - preferred to produce their own proposals to the Head of State... La Nupes, on the other hand, had refused together the idea of ​​a dinner put forward initially by the Elysée "so as not to share a time of conviviality with Éric Ciotti or Marine Le Pen”, indicates a socialist. The working meal tray, on the other hand, had to be accepted, provided that some did not decide to leave the premises before the end of the meeting. The hypothesis was not completely excluded when they arrived.

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