Remember this “beam that works” again, and again, dear to Edouard Philippe. The one which since 2017, according to the rallies – or poaching, depending on the camp in which one places oneself – within the socialist and LR troops, has expanded the Macronie house to form the large central bloc that the President of the Republic designed with his first election. This was the meaning of History, always thought Emmanuel Macron, who considers himself less as an architect than as the spark that set the machine in motion. The fruit, also, of an “exceptional context” as recalled by political scientist Bruno Cauprès, teacher at Sciences Po, between the costumes of François Fillon, the defection of François Hollande, and the personal adventure of a talented young leader .
And now ? Or rather, what about in four years? Which, more or less, amounts to the same thing, since being unable to represent himself, the president leaves it to his heirs to continue his great work. By working hard, especially on the right side of the chessboard, will the beam end up breaking? What about the house collapsing? A minister who has accompanied the Head of State since the dawn of his ascension wonders: “There is a fundamental, essential question: the quiet, natural continuity of the same camp after ten years in power and without tutelary shadow, benevolent or authoritarian, of Emmanuel Macron is it even possible?”
In the long interview he gave to Le Point magazine a few weeks ago, Emmanuel Macron, for once, spoke out about his heritage, in a warning that had all the air of a premeditated warning towards his potential successors: “If the central mole that I have brought together splits, the risk is of not being in the second round,” he declares. that’s the reality. The condition for the values that I hold to persist is that the republican forces work together: the social democrats, the centrists, the ecologists, the liberal right and the republican right. Those who have ambitions do not must not forget it. In four years we will have to ensure this unity.” Is this understood correctly, Messrs. Darmanin, Philippe, Le Maire, Attal?
The poison of ambitions
If the tenant of the Elysée considers it necessary to reinforce his fundamentals, it is because danger lurks. Not only, like the Minister of the Interior, the candidates for 2027 have already started their long-distance race, each in their own lane, but, at the same time, the famous “overrun” has never lived up to its name so poorly: the hidden confrontation for Matignon in July brought back the old labels; “left” and “right”, “ex-PS” and “ex-LR” are all camps which have once again divided the presidential space. “His obsession is that this central mole has only one representative, slips one of the president’s regular interlocutors. However, there is a risk: all these people agree on the essentials, but not on everything. There are always good reasons to divide, because personal ambitions can turn into poison, history has shown.”
For the moment, there is hardly any “political recomposer” on display. When François Bayrou is asked what his next fight will be, he answers in a fraction of a second – which, let’s admit, is not always the case: “I want there to be a lasting center in the French politics, this is what has been missing over the last fifty years and the country almost died.” The Minister of the Economy Bruno Le Maire has ratified the tripartition of the French political scene, is part of the barycenter of the majority and intends to prove that he will be able to hold “both ends of the omelette”, as Alain Juppé said . What about Edouard Philippe? “He considers that the theory of the central bloc must be favored, affirms the president of the Horizons group in the National Assembly, Laurent Marcangeli. We will need our partners from the majority, there will be work to be done, together, to prepare nomination.” During the Horizons congress in March, the mayor of Le Havre even spoke of an “absolute necessity to organize the central bloc” so as not to make it “perfectly ungovernable”.
“We are not going to leave the keys to Darmanin”
But is a center still a center if its new leader is not quite at the center? “Emmanuel Macron will have the same problem as his predecessors: having to manage a competition which will take place before his eyes and without him, explains Bruno Cauprès. And with his posture and his speech, Gérald Darmanin is undoubtedly the one who has the best chance to revive a right-left divide.” Is the left wing of the macronie ready to line up behind the current boss of Beauvau, convinced of being able to bring some of the Republicans to his side? Or behind Edouard Philippe, whose LR President of the Senate Gérard Larcher certified, at the microphone of France Inter, that he was “of course, and not paying lip service” to his political family? At a time when the currents are radicalizing within Renaissance, where a Clément Beaune dines ostensibly with Bernard Cazeneuve and would welcome the resurrection of an anti-Nupes social democracy, this is, at the moment T, fairy tale. A Secretary of State who exclaimed this summer “Darmanin at Matignon, it’s a no-go ! What would we gain? Would we become a new UMP? It was not our vocation!” Could he really fully support the Minister of the Interior if he became the new leader of his camp? “We are not going to leave the keys to Darmanin without doing or saying anything, squeaks another member of the government. But let us be clear: if we have to choose between Darmanin and Le Pen, there will be no hesitation. And to beat the RN, I will stick #EdouardPhilippe2027 posters on the walls.”
In short, a default choice. A short-term choice. Proof, one among others, that Emmanuel Macron has failed to consolidate a bloc of thought, a complete doctrine, at the same time as a political bloc. “We must demonstrate that Macronism is not just pragmatism, that “at the same time” is not the absence of ideology or the simple addition of a little left and a little right”, insists the Minister of the Civil Service Stanislas Guérini, implicitly confirming the bankruptcy of the last six years. Whatever the method, the arbitrations or the primaries, it will be a matter of remedying it; the opposite would have a name: moving back to jump better.