Unemployment this time eclipsed by purchasing power

On November 9, 2021, Emmanuel Macron entered the campaign without saying so. That evening, he chose to devote most of his “address to the French” in defense of its record. “Unemployment is at its lowest for almost fifteen years”, welcomes the President of the Republic. Before getting more ambitious: “We must not aim for just 7% unemployment, but full employment. » On several occasions, Emmanuel Macron insists: “Work continues to be our compass”, and “it is through work, and through more work, that we will be able to preserve our social model”.

The reference to value ” job “ recalls the ideas defended by Nicolas Sarkozy during his presidential campaigns. In 2007, the president of the UMP won the election on the promise of achieving full employment, with “5% unemployed” at the end of his five-year term. But he ventures to recommend to the French “to draw the consequences” in case of failure. The commitment is not kept, unemployment soars and he loses the election in 2012.

During this election, the socialist François Hollande in turn undertakes to “to be judged on the promise” reverse the unemployment curve. A risky bet: the figures stabilize too late, in 2016. He does not run again the following year, and his successor will benefit from the turnaround

“Traditionally, an election is played on socio-economic themes. But we are no longer in the patterns of the past, the Covid effect has been there”observes Frédéric Dabi, Director General of Ifop. “Never, in the spontaneous speeches of the French, have there been so few references to unemployment. It is not the first issue and has never been so low in the hierarchy of their priorities, because they are less concerned with unemployment than with their purchasing power”, which indeed appears in almost all opinion polls as the top concern. Erased by the health crisis and a campaign polarized on immigration, this subject is in the process, along with that of salaries, becoming central during the debates between the candidates. This is what the general secretary of the CFDT, Laurent Berger, wants with the “Pact of the power to live”, which brings together more than 60 organizations wishing ” to weigh “ on the presidential election, in particular in favor of the “essential workers”. “The election is even more at stake on the ability to have gainful employment and on employment, which is experiencing a problem of recruitment and attractiveness of the workforce”believes Damien Abad, president of the LR group in the National Assembly.

“The discourse of the French on unemployment has also changedfurther argues Frédéric Dabi. They wonder why there are unemployed, because many jobs are unfilled, and believe that the supreme injustice is no longer to be unemployed but to have a job that pays badly. »

In 2018, the yellow vests movement manifested this social divide, and, in a way, the head of state also contributed to changing perceptions with his response to a horticulturist: “I cross the street, I find you (work). » A sentence that he still defended in front of young people, Monday, January 24 in Creuse.

Candidate, Emmanuel Macron will highlight his results and the new rules for calculating unemployment insurance. Expelling from his mind the counterexample of the former Socialist Prime Minister Lionel Jospin, eliminated from the 2002 presidential election after having, however, reduced unemployment.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *