If the economic and social aspect seemed for a time excluded from the campaign in favor of sovereign subjects (immigration and security), it came back in force at the end of the year. The post-Covid global recovery, then the war in Ukraine accelerated inflation and exacerbated the concerns of the French for their purchasing power, forcing all candidates to position themselves on this theme.
Ultimate twist in a five-year term that was unlike anything observers could have predicted. A social crisis, those of the “yellow vests”, triggered by the rise in the price of fuel and the anger against the taxes applying to it, then a health crisis with the Covid-19 pandemic and the “whatever it takes put in place by the government have challenged economic dogma and traditional political boundaries like never before.
The question of debt and deficits, a traditional argument of the right, is struggling to impose itself in the debate, even if the party Les Républicains tries, through the voice of Valérie Pécresse, to accuse Emmanuel Macron of “burn the box”. Although the public debt may have climbed to nearly 115% of GDP, the hundreds of billions spent over two years to support the economy and preserve jobs are more to the credit of the Head of State – GDP has rebounded from 7 % last year.
Sovereignty and industrial relocation
Exit also the exit from the euro and the renegotiation of the treaties defended five years ago on the far right by Marine Le Pen, as on the left of the left with Jean-Luc Mélenchon. Instead, the themes of sovereignty have emerged, but also of industrial relocation following a pandemic which has shown the importance of having independence in these areas. Attention that the Ukrainian conflict should further reinforce, with the question of energy independence and the type of energy (nuclear, renewable) to be preferred. The term “investment” is making a strong comeback, in Emmanuel Macron’s project, to develop cutting-edge sectors, but also on the left, in favor of industry or ecological transition.
As for the subject of tax consent, at the center of all attention at the end of the previous five-year period after the budgetary restrictions due to the financial crisis of 2008, it gave way to massive tax cuts – in connection with the movement of “yellow vests” in particular – some 50 billion euros over the entire five-year period (at parity for households and businesses).
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