The political mood in France is heating up. The French President has now also felt this: After a man gave Macron a slap in the face, the country puzzles over the background.
After the slap in the face for President Emmanuel Macron, France puzzles over the motive of the perpetrator. The president had stressed that it was “an isolated act of a violent individual,” said government spokesman Gabriel Attal on Wednesday after a cabinet meeting chaired by Macron. Indeed, other observers see an expression of greater anger in the country.
Footage shows Macron being slapped by a man while visiting Tain-l’Hermitage on Tuesday. Two men were arrested, including the alleged attacker. This is said to have called “Montjoie Saint Denis” and “Down with Macronie”. Montjoie Saint Denis is a battle cry of the former Kingdom of France, which is used today by royalists.
“A slap is about humiliating”
French media reported that the men had no criminal record and were in their late 20s. Accordingly, the alleged attacker also follows right-wing personalities on the Internet on various channels. The men face up to three years in prison and a fine. A slap in the face is about humiliating, historian Nicolas Lebourg told Franceinfo. Macron had to keep hearing from people in the country, especially during the “yellow west” crisis, that he was not their president.
The alleged attacker is to be brought before a prosecutor this Thursday, as the French news agency AFP reported with reference to the public prosecutor of Valence.
Around a year before the elections, the political mood in the country has heated up. The regional elections will also take place at the end of June. The 43-year-old president wants to travel through the country this summer with a kind of “Tour de France” in order to make contact with the people. This also included a visit to Tain-l’Hermitage. After the incident, Macron almost ostentatiously sought the bathroom in the crowd. Although his popularity ratings have risen again in the Corona crisis, Macron is still under pressure. Observers predict a duel between him and right-wing populist Marine Le Pen in the 2022 presidential election.