Editorial Exchange: France Elects Its Own Version of Trudeau (Winnipeg Free Press)

The Canadian Press, May 9, 2017 | Go to article overview

Editorial Exchange: France Elects Its Own Version of Trudeau (Winnipeg Free Press)


Editorial Exchange: France elects its own version of Trudeau

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An editorial from the Winnipeg Free Press, published May 9:

France elects its own version of Trudeau

France has found its own, homegrown Justin Trudeau. French voters on Sunday massively supported political novice Emmanuel Macron as their president for the next five years. His packaging was excellent. His hair, though close-cropped, is not bad. Over the next few weeks, France's people will open the package and find out what they got.

Taking office at age 39, Mr. Macron makes the 45-year-old Justin Trudeau look like an elder statesman. He arrives as the articulate, brainy, highly educated figurehead for a new generation. He seems inclined to sweep some old cobwebs out of French law, politics and economic structure, if he gets the chance. Unlike Mr. Trudeau, he was never a drama teacher, but his wife was -- that was how they met when he was her pupil. Unlike Mr. Trudeau, he does not lead a political party -- but he must now create one quickly to present candidates for the National Assembly elections in June.

When he formally takes office on Sunday, Mr. Macron will appoint a prime minister and a cabinet. His choices may show the country how wide he will spread his arms in pulling together the country's political factions. He may reach into the ranks of the established parties whose candidates he trounced in the presidential election -- or he may ignore them altogether and choose technocrats of his own non-partisan ilk.

In the following days, the new president must complete the list of candidates he will present as his supporters in the June legislative elections. In much of France, his candidates will be running against incumbents loyal to other parties, though some incumbents may seek admission to Mr. …

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