There will be no amendment from MoDem MPs to increase the weekly working time by half an hour, to 35.5 hours. This proposal from the allies of the majority to finance part of the pensions caused a moment of overheating within the executive.
The Prime Minister, Élisabeth Borne, rejected the idea with as much irony as firmness, Monday, January 23, during her wishes to the press: “There is a lot of reflection, creativity in the majority, especially in the MoDem . But there (…), the government has no intention of opening a debate on the 35 hours. “In other words: no question of triggering a new anger while the unions show their intention” to raise the balance of power “.
“We will accompany the movement”
The message was received five out of five by the elected MoDem, who put away their working hypothesis and fell into line the next day. “Of course we may regret the retirements by points of two years ago, but that’s how it is, we’ll deal with it. We will support the movement, it is time to make this reform, ”admitted the president of the MoDem group in the National Assembly, Jean-Paul Mattei. “There is no pataquès”, added the deputy Philippe Vigier, at the forefront of the file.
“There was a communication error on our part”, concedes however a leader of the Modem, before adding: “Bayrou, it is not Mélenchon. The important thing is not that everyone is afraid. Hammering that the pension reform is “improvable”, the president of the MoDem recognizes the “creativity” of his troops. “We must be, if we can, modestly, the imaginative ones of the system, those who have the capacity to open new paths”, he declared, Wednesday January 25, during his wishes to the press.
Worried that public opinion does not perceive the demographic issues behind the preservation of the social model, the High Commissioner for Planning advocated “different methods” to reform: “a democracy of co-responsibility” between politicians, unions and citizens.
Measures still on hold
Will he be heard by Emmanuel Macron, who should soon create a cross-party commission to reform the institutions? The proportional for the legislative elections was one of the requirements of the alliance between the two men during the presidential election of 2017. But since then, and despite various offensives by MoDem deputies, the file is still in a drawer. And this is not the only subject on which the MoDem has trouble imposing its convictions.
During Emmanuel Macron’s first five-year term, he was not heard on an alternative proposal to reform the solidarity tax on wealth or on family policy and the family quotient. In the fall, an amendment by Jean-Paul Mattei to tax superdividends had sown discord within the majority, before being swept away by “49.3” on the 2023 budget. On pensions recently, François Bayrou pleaded , in vain, for an increase in employer contributions. To excuse this presumed lack of influence, a leader asks: “Is the voice of parliamentarians heard under the Fifth Republic? It’s not the MoDem that will solve a constitutional problem. »
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