Argo Explainer : #Europe2017
In 2017, the citizens of France are electing the eighth president of the Fifth French Republic. 2017 is also a critical and decisive year for the European project. Critical because many European citizens have doubts about the role of the European Union and its capacity to cope with future challenges within a troubled international environment. Decisive because, against the backdrop of the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome and elections in France, Germany and other Member States, 2017 represents a watershed moment: the European project can either stagnate, terminate, be redefined or relaunch. In this series of Argo Explainers, entitled #Europe2017, we analyse the European programmes of each of the major French presidential candidates; our Explainers covering the two finalists have been translated into English. Each Explainer offers an overview of the European programme of the individual candidates, followed by an appraisal of the measures they have proposed.
As the future of the European project is a decisive issue for our collective future, we seek to place the subject of Europe back at the heart of the political debate. We want to bear witness to the responsibility born by all citizens to take an engaged, critical look at the proposals made during this presidential campaign. As such, we encourage you to use the hashtag #Europe2017 on your preferred social networks either to challenge us, discuss points you would have liked to see us cover, point out inaccuracies or to put forward questions to the candidates.
What is Marine Le Pen’s vision for Europe ?
Marine Le Pen’s Europe programme emphasizes national preference and economic protectionism. She intends to put an end to any European intervention in political choices made by the French government, especially in the monetary, migration and economic fields as well as in the legislative processes. To achieve this objective, Le Pen’s first order of business would be to hold a referendum on France’s membership of the European Union.
Most of Le Pen’s policy proposals seem politically or legally impossible to implement without leaving the EU. Indeed, her programme would stand in contradiction with several European and international treaties and commitments, which make its implementation subject to infringements and sanctions.
What is Emmanuel Macron’s vision for Europe ?
Emmanuel Macron positions himself as a pro-European candidate advocating for a new and more dynamic, two-speed Europe. Macron’s programme calls for a significantly reinforced, further integrated Eurozone with a shared budget and its own Minister of Finance, within a wider European Union increasingly oriented toward intergovernmental cooperation based on the wishes of the Member States.
As such, a number of Macron’s proposals would require the revision of European treaties and a shared willingness among other Member States. Especially within the current environment, implementing his proposals for a number of policy areas could prove challenging.
#Europe2017 – Emmanuel Macron (English version)