Human Race: Macron’s election gamble | WORLD
Sound journalism, grounded in facts and Biblical truth | Donate

Human Race: Macron’s election gamble

Macron’s call for new elections may be timed to disrupt a right-wing surge

Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigitte exit a voting booth on June 9. Hannah McKay / Pool via AP

Human Race: Macron’s election gamble
You have {{ remainingArticles }} free {{ counterWords }} remaining. You've read all of your free articles.

Full access isn’t far.

We can’t release more of our sound journalism without a subscription, but we can make it easy for you to come aboard.

Get started for as low as $3.99 per month.

Current WORLD subscribers can log in to access content. Just go to "SIGN IN" at the top right.


Already a member? Sign in.

French President Emmanuel Macron cannot run for president again in 2027 due to term limits, but his recent snap election gamble may be a shrewd strategy to prevent a far-right presidency. After a trouncing in the EU parliament elections, Macron on June 9 dissolved the French National Assembly and called for new elections. The electoral drubbing seemed to show voters’ desire for course correction both at home and in the larger EU. But Macron wants to protect his legacy, which includes setting France on sound financial footing. Last year he forced through deeply unpopular pension reform on a procedural vote. In 2024, he also felt the ire of farmers upset with environmental restrictions.

France’s parliament has been dissolved only five times since World War II, the last time in 1997. By holding elections now, Macron may be trying to disrupt the current right-wing surge, led by the National Rally party’s Marine Le Pen, who won the June election with more than twice the share of Macron’s party. Legislative elections have in recent years been synchronized with presidential ones, usually ­giving the president a legislative majority. Now elections will be out of sync, likely leading to more power-­sharing. Still, Macron’s strategy could also cool right-wing momentum before the next presidential elections, in which Le Pen will almost certainly be a candidate.—Jenny Lind Schmitt

Pride flag reprieve

Los Angeles County lifeguard Capt. Jeffrey Little will not have to raise a Progress Pride Flag over his post after all. In early June, the county fire department agreed to accommodate Little’s objection to flying the LGBT flag—an objection based on his Christian beliefs—after Little filed a federal lawsuit. The county agreed throughout the month of June, designated as “LGBTQ Pride Month,” to assign Little only to stations not equipped to fly the Pride flag. Litigation continues because the county still requires the longtime lifeguard to ensure those he supervises raise the flag in his stead. —Steve West

Christina Chang

Christina Chang Handout

Abortion CEO picked

Christina Chang took the reins as the first executive director of the Reproductive Freedom Alliance June 3. The alliance, a coalition of governors who want to expand abortion access, formed in 2023 in reaction to the overturning of Roe v. Wade. The group bills itself as nonpartisan, yet all 23 of its member governors are Democrats. As chief program officer at the New York City Health Department, Chang secured two national firsts: She implemented a city-funded call center for abortion services and provided abortion pills to city public health clinics. Chang also worked at Planned Parenthood of New York City where she was the chief external affairs officer. —Kim Henderson

Ringo Chiu/SOPA Images/Sipa USA via AP

Students sue UCLA

Joshua Ghayoum and two fellow Jewish students filed a federal lawsuit against the University of California, Los Angeles, on June 5, claiming school officials violated their civil rights by allowing an anti-Semitic encampment on campus from April 25 to May 2. Ghayoum, a sophomore at the school, claims activists repeatedly blocked him from accessing the library, classrooms, and other public spaces. He said he heard protesters chanting “death to the Jews” and other anti-Semitic statements. Ghayoum and his classmates are asking the court to block the school from treating them unequally and award them monetary damages for their disrupted studies and emotional and physical stress. Steve West

Claudia Sheinbaum

Claudia Sheinbaum Marco Ugarte/AP

Presidenta elected

Former Mexico City Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum won election as president of Mexico on June 2, garnering more than 58 percent of the vote and becoming the first woman and first Jewish person to win the office. Sheinbaum has promised to expand welfare policies instituted by current President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, who is also a member of her liberal Morena political party. During her tenure as Mexico City mayor from 2018 to 2023, the climate scientist promoted abortion access and pro-LGBTQ policies. Sheinbaum will take office Oct. 1 and should have sweeping political support in Mexico’s Congress as the Morena party is projected to hold majorities in both chambers. A day after the election results came in, Mexican stocks dropped 6 percent on fears the party could amend the constitution. —Lauren Canterberry

Vince Fong

Vince Fong Francis Chung/Politico via AP

McCarthy succeeded

The U.S. House of Represen­tatives swore Vince Fong, R-Calif., into office on June 3, refilling the seat of former U.S. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and bringing the Republican majority in the chamber to 218. Fong’s election won’t solve Republican headaches over a small, fractured minority. But his presence will provide an additional buffer against unexpected member absences due to medical emergencies or travel schedules that could hamstring U.S. House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La. With just a two-seat majority in the chamber, the GOP has little wiggle room to lose votes if it expects to pass party-line items. Fong received endorsements from McCarthy as well as former President Donald Trump.—Leo Briceno

Epoch indictment

The chief financial officer of the Epoch Times Association Inc. was accused June 3 in a New York federal courtroom of laundering at least $67 million and bank fraud over four years. Prosecutors allege Weidong “Bill” Guan, his staff, and others at the conservative media company, which publishes The Epoch Times newspaper, used cryptocurrency to purchase money obtained from fraudulent unemployment benefits. They then deposited the funds in company and personal accounts or opened accounts with stolen personal information, according to the indictment. Guan allegedly told banks the 410 percent increase in revenue came from legitimate donations. Guan has pleaded not guilty. The charges are not related to the media company’s news operations. —Todd Vician


Please wait while we load the latest comments...