Elisabeth Borne Becomes France’s New Prime Minister

Photo: Élisabeth BORNE/Twitter

Labour Minister Elisabeth Borne has been nominated as the new Prime Minister of France ahead of parliamentary polls by President Emmanuel Macron. She is going to be the first woman to head the French government in more than 30 years. Borne, 61, will succeed Jean Castex, whose resignation was anticipated on Monday following Macron’s reelection to a second five-year term last month.

Elisabeth Borne, a centrist politician, was named France’s new prime minister, being only the second woman in history to be elected as the Prime Minister. Edith Cresson was the last female prime minister and served in President Francois Mitterrand’s administration from May 1991 to April 1992.

Borne has previously served as transport minister, minister for ecological transition, and, most recently, Labour minister. Her appointment will be very useful for President as he looks to drive through retirement reforms in his forthcoming term.

Borne’s first task as PM will be to ensure that Macron’s centrist party and its allies perform well in the June parliamentary election in France. The two-round vote will determine which party holds the majority of seats in France’s National Assembly, which has final power over the Senate in the legislative process. Macron also pledged a law to tackle France’s rising cost of living, which includes rising food and energy prices. His new cabinet will develop it, and it is scheduled to be achieved shortly after the legislative election.

If Macron’s party secured a majority in the Assembly, Borne will have to guarantee that the president’s promised pension changes, such as raising the minimum retirement age from 62 to 65, are implemented. Workers, unions, and left-wing voters have all condemned the proposed reforms.

Some left-wing politicians and their followers slammed Macron’s choice of Borne. Jean-Luc Melenchon, a fiery far-left leader, claimed on Twitter that her nomination signals a new season of social and ecological mistreatment, saying that her legacy equated to a cut in the allowances of 1 million unemployed people.