Several potential candidates are being considered for the 2024 European elections in Macron’s camp.

La première ministre, Elisabeth Borne, discute avec la secrétaire d’Etat chargée de la biodiversité Sarah El Haïry, la secrétaire d’Etat chargée de l’Europe Laurence Boone, la présidente de l’Assemblée nationale Yaël Braun-Pivet, et la ministre des solidarités Aurore Bergé. A Louan-Villegruis-Fontaine (Seine-et-Marne), le 14 septembre 2023.

Who will Emmanuel Macron choose as the leader of the presidential camp’s list for the European elections on June 9, 2024? Many individuals have expressed their interest in recent weeks, including Stéphane Séjourné, the Secretary General of Renaissance and President of the liberal group Renew Europe in the European Parliament, Clément Beaune, the Minister Delegate for Transport, Thierry Breton, the European Commissioner for the Internal Market, Laurence Boone, the Secretary of State for Europe, and Pascal Canfin, the President of the Environment Committee in the European Parliament.

At the Elysée, there is still a debate about the personal and political qualities that the lead candidate for the European elections should possess. Some insist on the need to choose a media-savvy personality, experienced in debates on news channels and capable of standing up to Jordan Bardella, who will lead the National Rally’s list. Others believe that a profile is needed that primarily appeals to the right.

Everyone is aware that this decision must also be made taking into account the influential positions that France may seek in the community institutions. And the weight it will have in the negotiations that will precede the appointment, after the June 2024 election, of the next Presidents of the Commission, the Council, and the European Parliament.

Stéphane Séjourné, a long-time companion of Emmanuel Macron, has a clear vision of the strategy he intends to defend for the European elections and the potential leader he could be. The secretary general of Renaissance, a skilled political strategist, is aware of his weaknesses – relatively unknown to the general public and not the most charismatic for a televised debate – but he is certain that this is not the most important aspect.

« Parler à son électorat »

“In 2019, we tested Nathalie Loiseau [head of the presidential camp] before the campaign, she had a 5% recognition rate. In the end, it was 53%. And she didn’t do a ’20 hours’ interview on TF1,” her camp recalls. Before continuing: “A good head of the list is someone who speaks to their electorate. For the European left, it is necessary to sell the political project. For the European right, it is necessary to sell the role of France in Brussels.”

Pour un profil plus à droite, l’Elysée teste l’hypothèse Thierry Breton, comme l’a écrit le quotidien Les Echos, le 14 septembre. Très présent dans les médias depuis qu’il est à Bruxelles, l’ex-ministre de l’économie de Jacques Chirac aime à se présenter comme celui qui a permis aux Européens d’avoir assez de vaccins contre le Covid-19 durant la pandémie ou qui a fait plier Apple, en l’obligeant à équiper son nouvel iPhone 15 d’un chargeur compatible avec les produits concurrents.

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