Source: Politico

Though the number of French MEPs will rise from 74 to 79, France’s presence in the European Parliament’s two most powerful parties (EPP & S& D) is set to fall, and many senior MEPs are retiring.

Despite making up 15 percent of the EU’s population post Brexit, France is only expected to take 5 percent of seats held by the EPP and the S&D. According to Politico’s projections, only 16 French nationals out of 317 MEPs are likely to be represented in the EPP and the S&D, compared to 33 in 2014.

Projected Results in France for European Elections

  1. Front National: 21 seats
  2. La République en Marche: 20 seats
  3. Les Républicains : 11 seats
  4. Les Verts : 8 seats
  5. France Insoumise : 8 seats
  6. Debout la France : 6 seats
  7. Socialists : 5 seats

Consequences for France

  1. Fewer influential posts for French lawmakers and less clout in the EP (being a sizeable national delegation inside a big group in the EP means wielding considerable clout.
  2. If French MEPs are only small factions within the EPP and S&D, they stand less chance of winning senior posts such as committee chairs and policy coordinator for their blocs and of driving the legislative agenda.
  3. Coordinators are crucial as they are appointed for two and hald years thanks to their seniority and experience to act as spokespeople for their group in the Parliament’s legislative committees.
  4. The loss of big-hitters will also mean a lower media profile for French MEPs back home.
  5. There will be fewer people in France to explain what the Parliament does for voters. The two big European parties will be inaudible in France.
  6. France would not be able to count so much on its MEPs to convince their German counterparts in the big group and this could contribute to a greater imbalance in the Franco-German relationship at the heart of the EU.
  7. La République en Marche has joined the liberal ALDE group which is predicted to win 68 seats and comes third after the EPP, S& S. Also most of its MEPs will be inexperienced, making it harder for them to claim many senior posts in the Parliament or in a group.

In contrast, Euroskeptic parties could collectively win up to 250 seats in the EP according to a new report by the European Council on Foreign Relations. With that share- 35 percent of the whole plenary, Euroskeptics would win 4 vice presidency positions and be entitled to lead around 8 committees. Controlling one-third or more of Parliament’s votes would also put Euroskeptics in a strong position to veto trade deals or prevent action on rule of law issues.

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