The debate on the disputed pension reform arrives in the cauldron of the Assembly – RT in French

A packed hemicycle and two opposition motions: the debate on pension reform is launched in the National Assembly for two high-risk weeks, under pressure from opponents who are organizing two new days of mobilization.

The kick-off of the debates on the controversial pension reform will be given this February 6 at 4 p.m. for this battle around the postponement of the legal age of departure from 62 to 64, a flagship reform of Emmanuel Macron’s second five-year term, which only has a relative majority in the Assembly.

On the benches of the government, the Minister of Labor Olivier Dussopt, weakened by suspicions of “favoritism” in the awarding of a public contract when he was mayor of Annonay, will be surrounded by colleagues from Bercy for this budgetary text.

“This text is necessary, fair, and I am more than ever determined to defend it”, declared the minister in Release this February 6, promising to be “in great shape” for the debates.

At the approach of two days of action, February 7 and 11 at the call of the inter-union, the head of government Elisabeth Borne was at the Elysee Palace on February 6 for her weekly meeting with the President of the Republic. The day before, she again recalled that the decline in the legal age represented “a collective effort”, saying that she was concerned “to ensure the future of our pay-as-you-go pension system”.

“Massive mobilization noted”

In a last minute micro concession, she announced that people who started working between the ages of 20 and 21 will be able to retire at 63, an extension of the long career scheme.

Will this gesture be enough to obtain the crucial votes of the right? Not for Aurélien Pradié, in particular, who points to a “deception” and asks to go further for those who started contributing early.

However the president of the group Olivier Marleix retorts to him this February 6 in the Figaro that the Republicans had not “asked to modify the rules of access to long careers”. As for her counterpart in the Renaissance group, Aurore Bergé, she opposed on France Info an end of rejection: “It’s not because I worked four to five weeks in the summer that I’m in the same conditions as the one who started working at age 20 without stopping,” she said.

On the union side, Elisabeth Borne’s effort did not convince: it is a “patch” which is “not the response” expected “to the massive mobilization observed”, denounced Laurent Berger, the boss of the CFDT. Already two days of strikes and demonstrations, on January 19 and 31, each time brought together more than a million demonstrators according to the police, more than two million according to the organizers.

“We are counting on the fact that there are mobilizations so that the elected representatives of the Republic take into account the opinion of the citizens”, declared this February 6 on France 2 the secretary general of the CGT, Philippe Martinez.

“Project against project”

While the school holidays started this week for zone A, traffic will be severely disrupted on February 7 at the SNCF and the RATP. The Minister of Transport Clément Beaune called on LCI “the trade union organizations to the responsibility” for the day of Saturday February 11 which will mark the departure on vacation from zone B.

On February 6 at the Palais Bourbon, the LFI deputies will immediately defend a request for the rejection of the entire reform, “brutal” and “unfair”. The vote on their motion could give some cold sweats to the presidential camp. Then the RN group, also against the 64-year-olds, will bring its request for a referendum on the reform, which is unlikely to be validated.

The deputies will then tackle the some 20,000 amendments tabled on the bill, including 13,000 by LFI. Elisabeth Borne had said she hoped for “a real debate, project against project” rather than “caricatures”.

This flow of amendments “allows you to manage the tempo a little, to speed up, to slow down” instead of letting the pace be dictated, opposes the Insoumis François Ruffin who wants with the Nupes to be able to relay in the hemicycle “the life of people” , “the France of reality”.

If the Assembly does not overcome the amendments by midnight February 17, the text will pass to the Senate, due to the choice of the executive to use an amending budget for Social Security.

This constrained time is strongly criticized by the oppositions who nevertheless intend to manage to discuss article 7 devoted to the postponement of the retirement age.

The other hot spots of the text focus on the situation of women, who could be losers with the decline in the retirement age, the difficulty or even the employment of seniors.


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