“Me, when I go, I go”, warns François Bayrou, gloomy and almost threatening look, while an interlocutor asks him if his fight to establish proportionality in the legislative elections of 2022 does not risk weakening Emmanuel Macron . “There are battles that must honor us because they deserve to be fought. This is one ”, asserts that day the boss of the Modem. Yet a historical ally of the majority, Bayrou is not about to give up on this subject, which was among the campaign promises of candidate Macron in 2017.
The question of proportionality suddenly returned to the debate four weeks ago… by the mayor of Pau himself. ” I do not give up. When we have made a commitment, the political leaders must face up to their obligations, ”he balances on January 26 in the morning of France Inter. A scud that we had not seen coming from the side of the Elysee … and that we have also little tasted: “Spending ten minutes of interview on the proportional, is it really time? We are in the midst of the Covid crisis, are there no other priorities? ”The head of state irritated in the wake of several witnesses.
Above all, the scene marks another episode in the turbulent relationship that the two men have maintained since the start of the five-year term. Made of ups and downs, fueled by sometimes untimely exits and regular pressure surges from the one who was appointed High Commissioner for Planning in September. “My freedom of tone, my local roots and this look that I bring far from Paris, it is a strength for him”, insists the main interested party regularly, to the point of having established himself as an indispensable advisor to Emmanuel Macron .
“Bayrou in 2017, it’s a boost to overtake Fillon”
Because the Head of State knows it well, he owes him a lot in his conquest of power. “I, who experienced the 2017 campaign, saw the before and after the rallying of François Bayrou. We were on the wrong foot, with an issue of credibility. And when he joined us, it clearly gave a boost. Honestly, I do not know if we would be there today “, confesses the spokesperson of the government, Gabriel Attal, who supports:” In fact, this gives it a special place in the majority. “
At the risk of using too much of this advantage today? “Sometimes he goes too far. We still see it there with the controversy over proportionality while we are entangled in the health crisis and the country must revive its economy, ”storms another minister, for whom Macron would have an interest in taking the field in the perspective of the presidential. “Bayrou in 2017, it is the one which allows to give a boost to overtake Fillon in the polls. But I am not sure that it will have the same utility in 2022 ”, asks an adviser.
For the moment, the tenant of the Elysee has not followed up on the last blow of the mayor of Pau. At the risk of seeing his ally ring the charge even louder? “For me, the relationship hasn’t changed. It is made up of admiring support and frankness. Clearly, I do not see any risk of fracturing the majority, ”swears the boss of MoDem deputies, Patrick Mignola.
“The institutional fight of his life”
“We must be careful not to stroll, warns Marc Fesneau, Minister Modem in charge of Relations with Parliament. François Bayrou is in a historic fight for the MoDem. Because proportionality is the institutional fight of his life and that he led with Marielle de Sarnez. When others, internally, even speak of “testamentary combat” vis-à-vis the one who was for forty years his political alter ego, and who died in mid-January.
Its disappearance is not harmless to the context. “Within the Modem, Marielle ran the shop. And now that she is no longer there, that he sees around him a young generation that emerges like Fesneau and Mignola, he felt obliged to relaunch himself immediately in a fight as a pack leader, analyzes a heavyweight of the executive. The proportional allowed him to weld his team around him… when he could have been challenged. In short, Bayrou has not said his last word, and Macron knows it well.
Original article by : www.leparisien.fr