Very raised oppositions, too few LREM deputies: the examination on Tuesday evening of the key bill on the extension of the state of health emergency got bogged down, between disputed votes and sitting suspensions.
This bill, discussed in new reading, provides for an extension of the state of emergency in the face of the coronavirus epidemic until February 16. This exceptional regime makes it possible to drastically limit travel or to confine the population.
But from its article 1, trouble began for the government, which had already had a day complicated by the mess around a possible curfew in Ile-de-France. The oppositions managed to vote for an extension of the emergency until December 14 only.
The crying point of the Christmas holidays
“The end of year celebrations are a privileged moment” and “everything should be done to allow the French to meet up with their families”, pleaded the author of the adopted amendment, Josiane Corneloup (LR), who pushed for this “situation before the Christmas holidays”.
Other political groups had asked for such a review clause in early December or in January, deeming February 16 too far away. “Nobody agrees” with this date, underlined Cécile Untermaier (PS). No question of putting democratic life “under cover” for so long, added Pascal Brindeau (UDI).
But “the government wishes to register the date of February 16” because “we are in a crisis situation, the French understand that to act, we need visibility”, had previously declared the Deputy Minister Brigitte Bouguignon. This extension is “at the same time necessary, adapted and proportionate” to the health situation, added the rapporteur Jean-Pierre Pont (LREM).
But the majority found itself in the minority when the vote was taken. Sitting suspensions and heckling followed. “The majority is unable to be gathered on a text on the emergency at 9 pm”, lambasted Philippe Gosselin (LR) while Emmanuelle Ménard, close to the RN, launched to the LREM: “you want full powers but you do not assume ”.
“Trample on democracy”
Another complicated vote ensued: an amendment by Paul Molac (Freedoms and Territories) was adopted against the government’s opinion. It provides that the confinement decreed by the executive from October 30 can only be renewed beyond November 30 after approval by Parliament.
Quickly back at the Palais Bourbon, the Minister of Health Olivier Véran shortly after asked for the “reserve of votes” on the remaining amendments and articles, which postpones the ballots when the government chooses. “I would especially not like that we have to present to the French a text so destabilized”, justified the minister.
VIDEO. Quack on a new curfew in Paris: “Nobody contradicts anybody”, affirms Véran
The government has the means to reverse these two votes before the final adoption of the bill, which is scheduled for Friday but could be postponed. He has not announced it at this stage but could ask for a new deliberation on the two amendments, or resort to the blocked vote procedure, according to deputies interviewed by AFP.
“Nobody is fooled”, launched the head of file of the deputies PS Valérie Rabault, with the announcement of the reserve of the votes. “The Covid does not give you the right to trample on democracy,” said Mathilde Panot (LFI).
“If you don’t want to hear it, get out of here!” “
“It is not by demagoguery that we fight the virus but by having political courage,” retorted Christophe Castaner, president of the LREM deputies, while new amendments had been presented, to allow reopening of local stores.
The Assembly debates endlessly “while our caregivers are fighting to save lives”, also opposed Olivier Véran, drawing the wrath of LR in particular. “That’s the reality, if you don’t want to hear it, get out of here!” “, He continued, referring to young patients currently in intensive care. Republican boss Damien Abad then called on deputies to stand up to applaud the nursing staff. Then the “walker” Patricia Mirallès, “survivor of the Covid”, asked for a minute of silence for “all those who died today”.
Discussions should resume Wednesday afternoon on the hundred or so remaining amendments. Sign that these three additional months of state of emergency pass with difficulty: the Senate, dominated by the right-wing opposition, had him last Friday limited the extension to January 31.
Original article by : www.leparisien.fr