Local establishment, existential crisis… Five years after its creation, what challenges does the presidential party face?

Emmanuel Macron. – KONRAD K./SIPA

  • On April 6, 2016, Emmanuel Macron launched En Marche to conquer the Elysee Palace.
  • Five years later, the party is struggling to find its place alongside the majority and the government.
  • “20 Minutes” looks back on the challenges that await the presidential party by 2022.

“Now is not the time to party, but in difficult times, it’s good to get together as a family. “The Republic on the march celebrates its five years this Tuesday, and to mark the occasion, the party founded by Emmanuel Macron is organizing a” virtual meeting “on engagement, led by its spokespersons Mounir Mahjoubi and Maud Bregeon. “Speeches by ministers like Marlène Schiappa and Sébastien Lecornu are planned. The objective is to mobilize the party and define our objectives for the crucial year to come, with the regional elections and especially the presidential election ”, explains to 20 minutes Maud Bregeon, elected from Levallois.

Because five years after its creation, LREM is in existential crisis. The movement is certainly in good financial health (first party in France with 23 million euros) and has a large number of members (420,000 claimed, but without contribution), but it still has to meet many challenges.

Finding your place alongside the executive

When it was created, En Marche! had a clear objective: to be an electoral machine to bring Emmanuel Macron to the Elysee Palace. But four years after the presidential victory, the party is struggling to define its role alongside the majority and the government. Disappointed, forty deputies have even slammed the door. “It is a party which did not bring out anyone, which did not bring out a single idea […] It is a party which has no substance, which does not actually exist. It is a non-party ”, thus slices the deputy ex-LREM Emilie Cariou to
France Info.

“We do not have to be ashamed of our record,” replies Maud Bregeon. “We do not have to emancipate ourselves from Emmanuel Macron but on a certain number of subjects, particularly societal, we have a voice to be heard. The party wants to re-mobilize its base, by encouraging its activists to get involved in specific causes, such as animal welfare or the end of life. A dedicated platform must be launched during the anniversary evening. “It will be during 2021 local committees. Because people want to get involved without necessarily stepping aside, ”summarizes the deputy and spokesperson for LREM Roland Lescure.

Establish locally

This is probably the biggest failure of walkers. During the municipal elections, the presidential party hoped to improve its local roots. But the harvest was disappointing and the regional and departmental events scheduled for next June could prove to be just as delicate. “It’s a hell of a mess,” recognizes a relative of Emmanuel Macron.

“With the health crisis, we will not be able to campaign. We will therefore not be able to improve our local presence, while the leavers will campaign on their balance sheet, ”he adds. This parliamentarian however hopes “some surprises, and why not LREM opposition groups”, but adds: “We are a recent party, and it will take a second presidential term to anchor us more. “

Help Emmanuel Macron win in 2022, by restructuring?

Because it is the number one objective of En Marche for the coming year: to prepare the future campaign of the outgoing president. “When we enter the home straight, it will be the sole objective of the movement, to be a war machine to win the next presidential election,” says a Macronist deputy. Will the change go through a change at the head of the party? The executive office of LREM must be renewed in July, which could force the general delegate, Stanislas Guerini, regularly at the center of criticism, to put his post back on the line.

But the party’s role for 2022 may be less than during the last campaign. In recent months, many Macronist executives have called for going beyond the movement to create a “common home”. Last month, a new structure,
“For a European renaissance”, was thus launched, and could make small. Maud Bregeon recognizes this in her own way: “Emmanuel Macron will rely on LREM in 2022, but not only, we will have to bring together more widely, because there is a desire to go beyond. “

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