These are the aftermath of the “Saint-Denis meetings”. As announced, Emmanuel Macron wrote to the various leaders of the political parties to invite them to a new meeting on November 17 and to propose that they broaden the scope of the referendum to “social questions”.
In a letter written on Friday and received on Sunday, November 5 in the evening by the leaders of the parties represented in the Assembly, consulted by AFP on Sunday, November 5, the President of the Republic raises several subjects concerning this new meeting, after the one which had lasted 12 hours on August 30.
“Our reflections on the avenues for development of the referendum must be continued,” initially wrote the head of state. Then he specifies: “It would involve both taking up bills relating to so-called societal issues such as the end of life sometimes mentioned, but also broader reforms affecting several intertwined aspects, as is the case migration issues which concern sovereign, economic, social or even diplomatic matters. This would involve modifying the Constitution in its article 11 which would change in depth.
RIP: a threshold lowered to one million
Emmanuel Macron also proposes lowering the threshold to one million voters, compared to nearly 5 million currently, to allow the organization of a shared initiative referendum (RIP). He suggests also lowering the number of parliamentarians required (93 against 185) and “also giving citizens the possibility of taking the initiative” of this RIP, “while today only parliamentarians can launch the procedure” . Introduced in a constitutional reform in 2008, no RIP has yet been successful.
“The context seems to me to impose a point on the international situation,” he writes, referring to the conflict between Israel and Hamas after the bloody attacks of October 7. The various party leaders had already discussed the situation in the Middle East with the president on October 12.
In the wake of the last meeting, on August 30, “I wanted to entrust a mission relating to decentralization to the former minister and deputy Eric Woerth in order to formulate avenues for reform which could meet the objectives shared together (simplify, clarify, make more effective and restore the confidence of our fellow citizens”, also announced the President of the Republic.
Another point of reflection put forward by the Head of State: the case of “Corsica, New Caledonia and more generally overseas”. “Beyond these territories, more general developments could appear desirable, in a logic of greater differentiation,” he writes.