Macron-Castex, a new tandem to the test of the second wave

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New epidemic wave. New duo at the top of the state. In the spring, Emmanuel Macron had managed the health crisis by dealing with a Prime Minister asserting himself more and more. Between the two men, the differences of analysis spread over the weeks: Edouard Philippe pleaded for a deconfinement more spread out over time, more restrictive gauges for major events, management by departments and not by regions. He warned of the risk of the country’s economic “collapse”.

“No, I don’t have those big words,” retorted the president. In front of the cameras, the host of Matignon displayed a willingly humble tone, at times assuming his ignorance of the evolution of the situation. A style that made it take off in the polls. And who perhaps pushed the Head of State to part with an overly popular sparring partner …

This fall puts a new tandem to the test… which is nothing like the previous one. In the Defense Council, the president gives the “la”. Without discussion, or almost. “Emmanuel Macron and Jean Castex are more in phase,” observes a witness of their relationship. With a more vertical distribution of roles. “Yesterday, the power was Emmanuel Macron and Edouard Philippe, now the decisions, this is the sole responsibility of Emmanuel Macron”, mocks a minister of weight.

Solemn speeches at essential moments

Tuesday evening, the Prime Minister brought together part of his government in Matignon to re-mobilize the team in the health storm (Jean-Michel Blanquer, Bruno Le Maire, Gérald Darmanin, Élisabeth Borne, Olivier Véran, Jacqueline Gourault, Frédérique Vidal, Amélie de Montchalin, Jean-Baptiste Djebbari, Gabriel Attal). These meetings will now take place every week. It is also about better coordinating messages. “In two days, we talked about security, tourism, viruses, it’s confused,” chokes a ministerial communicator.

During the first wave, faced with an unknown virus, the two heads of the executive spoke frequently, saturating the media bandwidth on their own. This time, the president reserves his solemn speeches for unavoidable moments: July 14, the deadly floods in the South-East and … the Covid, Wednesday, at a time when public opinion is disoriented.

As for the Prime Minister, responsible for running the store, he was very present in the communication of the executive but for what effect? Jean Castex spent his summer alerting to this “virus that does not take vacation”. He announced the mandatory masks in business and in shops. He unveiled the contours of the recovery plan. He spoke again Monday, three days before the interview with the head of state. Without changing the behavior of some French people, without managing to stem the slackening of part of the population. A challenge that the Head of State will face personally from this Wednesday evening.

Original article by : www.leparisien.fr

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