With the primaries, the presidential election became a game of pool in which one man’s failure is another man’s treasure. Who, during the rally at the Elysée, will profit the most of Hamon’s breakthrough? Of Manuel Valls’ bad scores and the elimination of Arnaud Montebourg at the first round of the first round of the primaries of the left?
First lesson: the participation should rejoice all opponents of the Socialist Party, from Fillon to Mélenchon over Macron. With a little over 1,5 million voters this Sunday, the “belle alliance populaire” was to Jean-Christophe Cambadélis and managed to break even. The PS supporters can be reassured as well: the France Insoumise and En Marche movements are still clashing. But we are still far of the 2 million participators that were awaited by the PS, and even further away from the 4,3 million Frenchmen that attended to the primaries of the right.
Jean-Luc Mélenchon denounced the participation numbers: “that were helium-filled”. “The PS is definitely sentenced to lose all the elections, even those organised by them.”, the left party says. “Francois Fillon alone scored what seven candidates at the primaries of the left received”, ironically said the deputy LR Valérie Boyer, supporter of the former prime minister.
Mélenchon paralyzed by Hamon
The case gets more complicated for Jean-Luc Mélenchon. Because if Benoit Hamon didn’t win yet, he now is the favourite of the national primaries, heavily helped by Arnaud Montebourg. But a victory of the Yvelines deputy wouldn’t help the candidate of La France Insoumise at all, who hoped for a helping hand by Manuel Valls, symbol of the social-liberal turn during Hollande’s presidency.
Benoit Hamon chose a program open to ecological future. But Jean-Luc Mélenchon hoped to corner the ecologists and get them under his banner, meaning the two men are engaged in a head-to-head competition.
Yannick Jadot made clear that he wouldn’t rally for anybody. But should he fail to get 500 signatures to appear in the first round, Benoit Hamon could become a privileged contact person for the former greens.
Macron will get boosted by a probable loss of de Valls
On one hand, Mélenchon would like to forget his scores on Sunday, and on the other hand, Emmanuel Macron can be proud of his, although a win by Arnaud Montebourg would worried him more. As Manuel Valls will potentially be losing, everything will get easier for the founder of the En Marche movement.
If the loss will be confirmed on January the 29th, Macron will be the only candidate to occupy the wide politic space between the middle-left and the middle-right, provided that Francois Bayrou abandons his presentation, regardless of the tensions with Francois Fillon’s team.
Manuel Valls’ loss could mean another, more worrying consequence for Benoit Hamon: the break of the right wing of the Socialist Party and certain Dutchman executives in favour of Emmanuel Macron. The centrists allied to Fillon are the first to worry. Some are thinking the same about the direction of the Socialist Party: “This first round shows that people were happy to vote for a utopian left. But if Manuel Valls won’t win, there is a real risk that the people of the left who want to win in 2017 join Macron”, a leader of the Socialist Party warned.
Manuel Valls will play this partition at full regime to try and regain his delay until the 29th. Meanwhile, the En Marche movement will most likely take Benoit Hamon’s win to get the most socialist elected representatives. “All those who want to rally around our procedure, our project and our values are welcome!”, added the PS deputy and right-hand of Emmanuel Macron. After betting on Hollande’s abandonment, Macron could win the primaries of the left, without even participating.