Two-thirds of French citizens are “dissatisfied” with globalist President Emanuel Macron, according to a new poll.
The poll, conducted by pollster Ifop, surveyed French voters across the country for the conservative weekly Le Journal du Dimanche (JDD).
The poll shows that 66 percent of voters are “dissatisfied” with Macron’s actions as president, compared to just 34 percent who say they are “satisfied.”
Express.co.uk reports: M Macron, 41, rose to power in 2017 on a centrist platform, obliterating mainstream parties on the right and left with a promise to revive the sluggish economy and clean up politics.
But over the past nine months, the momentum has been knocked out of his presidency by the sometimes violent anti-government movement, which has held weekly protests against social inequality and his centrist administration.
The first yellow vest demonstrations were held in mid-November to contest planned fuel tax hikes but rapidly evolved into a broader revolt against the Macron government, widely perceived as being arrogant and indifferent to citizens’ daily concerns.
The protests badly damaged M Macron’s popularity, forcing him to adopt a less confrontational attitude and agree to a series of policy U-turns.
In April, he promised significant tax cuts in a bid to defuse popular anger, but also called for a return to public order.
He said that the tax cuts would be worth some £4.5 billion (€5bn) and financed by eliminating corporate tax breaks, longer work hours and reductions in public spending.
The measures came on top of a package of tax cuts and income top-ups worth more than £9 billion (€10bn) announced at the height of the unrest in December.
In June, Prime Minister Edouard Philippe announced that it was time to relaunch M Macron’s reform agenda with what he called an “Act II,” but stressed the new measures would be implemented in a less abrasive manner than in the past.
M Philippe said his government would create incentives for the French to stay in work longer and reiterated his intention to simplify France’s unwieldy pensions system to make it fairer.
“We will maintain the possibility to retire at 62, but we will define a pivot age and incentives to work longer,” he said.
On unemployment benefits, M Philippe said allowances would be scaled back for high earners who lose their jobs, and that a controversial scheme allowing former employees to receive monthly benefits that exceeded their monthly salary would be scrapped.
While the protests have all but fizzled out, the pension and unemployment benefits systems – two major planks of M Macron’s reform drive – are hot-button issues that may reignite yellow vest anger.