Germany and France Agree to Draw up Roadmap on Developing EU
- Author: Leroy Wright May 18, 2017,
May 18, 2017, 15:06
The online poll was carried out between May 15 and 17 - after Macron named conservative lawmaker Edouard Philippe as his prime minister and before the new government was unveiled on Wednesday.
It is a delicate balancing act, as centrist Mr Macron tries to redesign French politics by borrowing ministers from left and right, and combining new faces with experienced heavyweights who can help him make his mark on European and world affairs.
Jean-Yves Le Drian, outgoing Socialist defence minister and a close friend of ex-President Francois Hollande, became foreign minister and minister for Europe.
Gerard Collomb, the veteran Socialist party mayor of Lyon who was one of the first in his party to back Macron, was named interior minister.
Other major cabinet appointments include Olympic fencing champion Laura Flessel as sports minister, Muriel Pénicaud as labour minister, Agnes Buzyn as health minister and Annick Girardin as the overseas territories minister.
Environmentalist Nicolas Hulot, takes charge of ecology, and publisher Francoise Nyssen became culture minister.
By appointing him, Mr Macron has passed over some loyal followers including Richard Ferrand, a former Socialist who was one of the first to join Mr Macron's cause past year and is secretary general of REM.
Goulard, a centrist member of the European Parliament since 2009, supports a strong federal Europe.
Macron has vowed to end the left-right politics that have dominated France for decades, and his startup centrist Republic on the Move, or REM, party, which is just a year old, needs to find a wide base of support for the parliamentary elections.
That the new prime minister was a member of the Republicans, the mainstream right, "is the demonstration that (the Republicans) can not symbolize an opposition worthy of the name", Le Pen said in a statement.
Speaking with European Council President Donald Tusk by his side, Macron said Wednesday night that he's advocating "a less bureaucratic and a more political Europe".
If he falls short, the new Parliament could vote down Mr Macron's Cabinet and choose its own government, sidelining the president.
For far-right leader Marine Le Pen, Macron's rival for the presidency, the selection of Philippe reflects a continuation of the system she hoped to break.
Mr Macron, who won the May 7 run-off on promises of cleaning up the corruption and stagnation marking traditional parties, said he will require ministers to sign a commitment to "integrity and morality".
That has never been done before, ' he said.
In his first speech in the ministry's courtyard Wednesday, Collomb said Europe and France especially "are being targeted by terrorists", noting that the terrorist threat comes from overseas, but is also "rooted in our territory".
How long that cabinet lasts, and whether it's able to enact the economic modernization Macron promised in his campaign, will depend on parliamentary elections to be held June 11 and June 18.
Shortly after the announcement, Macron flew to Berlin, continuing a tradition of French presidents making their first foreign trip to Germany.