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Ex-French PM offers to back Macron in June polls

Ex-French PM offers to back Macron in June polls”

On Tuesday, former Socialist prime minister Manuel Valls - a failed candidate for his party's presidential nomination - said he wanted to run for parliament on Mr Macron's ticket.

I will be a candidate in the presidential majority and I wish to join up to his movement, namely the "Republic on the Move".

Mr. Macron, though the victor of the presidential election on Sunday, could be facing an uphill battle next month as many doubt his new party, Le Republique En Marche!, will be able to form a majority in the National Assembly.

The En Marche! party will now be called Republique en Marche, or Republic on the Move, party Secretary General Richard Ferrand said at a press conference in Paris on Monday. Centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron won Sunday's runoff vote of the French presidential election, defeating his far-right rival Marine Le Pen, according to polling agency projections issued after the vote.

The Socialists remain torn between the radical left of their defeated candidate Benoit Hamon and the more centrist branch that had been led by Valls. The newly elected French president set out plans in his manifesto to introduce a "Buy European Act" which would effectively restrict the ability of companies operating mainly outside of the bloc to access public procurement deals.

Mr Valls told RTL radio that Mr Macron's victory over far-right leader Marine Le Pen in the presidential run-off on Sunday was a blow to populism in Europe, and gave a "terrific" image of France overseas. Without that, Macron would be forced to forge alliances, which could mean a watering down of his campaign promises on economic modernization. The Republic on the Move party made clear that even top-rank politicians from established parties, like Valls, were not guaranteed a slot on its list of parliamentary contenders.

He has said that half of his candidates for the 577 seats in the National Assembly will be new to politics.

"Leaving your party is the best way of getting the door slammed in your face", Francois Baroin, head of The Republicans' parliamentary election team, told journalists.

The National Assembly in France has full powers to pass laws and approve the prime minister, and the country's two main parties - the Socialists and the Union for a Popular Movement - which for the first time were both absent from the second round of the presidential election, are seeking to use the vote to bounce back.

But Ms Merkel said: "I don't see why - as a priority - we should change our policy".

"I do know how your new president now has chose to jeopardize your budget, your initiatives, and he is extremely skeptical about climate change", he said.



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