A Macron strategist said the president would name a new PM before the June elections.
A French prime minister should be loyal, content at lingering in their boss’s shadow and a dab hand with the country’s mille-feuille bureaucracy. He or she should also know they will be disposed of if the president’s popularity runs low.
These will be just some of the qualities President Emmanuel Macron has in mind this week as he considers a new prime minister to launch a second term that will be without any honeymoon with the electorate.
A Macron strategist said the president would name a new prime minister before the June legislative elections.
Macron needs to send a signal that he has heard the frustrations of voters expressed in low turnout and big scores for radical far-right and far-left parties.
The president is keen to name a woman. Someone who understands the state machinery but is not political, one government official told media on condition of anonymity.
The official and one other government source said Macron, who has strived to have a gender-balanced cabinet, was looking for a woman prime minister after failing to fulfil a campaign assurance to do so during his first term.
If it were so, she would be the first since Edith Cresson briefly occupied the Hotel de Matignon during the presidency of Socialist leader Francois Mitterrand in the early 1990s.
The same two sources, who are familiar with Macron’s thinking, said the president also wanted a person with proven ‘green’ credentials.
During the presidential campaign, Macron said he would put his next prime minister in charge of “green planning”, aiming to appeal to left-wing voters’ nostalgia for post-war central planning while tapping into 21st century worries about climate change.