Mon | Oct 23, 2017

Macron's party suffers hit in French Senate election

Published:Monday | September 25, 2017 | 12:00 AM
Macron

PARIS (AP):

French President Emmanuel Macron's upstart centrist party suffered its first electoral blow Sunday, as traditional conservatives dominated Senate elections amid mounting disenchantment with Macron's leadership.

The results damage Macron's legitimacy as he seeks to make his mark on Europe's future and embark on a divisive labour law overhaul that he hopes will invigorate the moribund French economy. Truckers plan to block highways and fuel depots today in the latest show of anti-Macron defiance.

Macron could still pass his reforms despite the election result, however. That's because the lower house of Parliament has the final say in legislation over the Senate, and because lawmakers from the conservative Republicans party support many of Macron's pro-business policy plans.

Official results from voting across mainland France showed the Republicans clearly winning Sunday's vote for about half the chamber's 348 seats, followed by the Socialists, traditional centrists, and Macron's 17-month-old Republic on the Move! party.

A final count including France's overseas territories is expected in the coming days.