The majority of French people are not satisfied with a series of new economic policies unveiled by President Emmanuel Macron this week, and say that the Gilets Jaunes (Yellow Vest) protests should continue, according to a new poll.
According to a poll by Odoxa, 59% of French say that they are not convinced by Macron, despite finding his proposal “satisfactory,” according to Le Figaro. Just 21% found Macron’s new policies convincing despite viewership for his speech jumping 40% over a speech last month.
That said, while Macron may have failed to win his people over – most of those polled agreed with his specific proposals; 61% favored the minimum wage boost, 55% liked the tax-free year-end bonuses and 85% of those surveyed backed no tax on overtime pay.
54% of those surveyed said the Yellow Vest protests should continue.
Many of the Yellow Vests have flat-out rejected Macron’s proposals, according to European-Views.
He is trying to do a pirouette to land back on his feet but we can see that he isn’t sincere, that it’s all smoke and mirrors,” said Jean-Marc, a car mechanic as a gathering of some 150 Yellow Vests in the southern town of Le Boulou.
“It’s just window dressing, for the media, some trivial measures, it almost seems like a provocation,” said Thierry, 55, a bicycle mechanic.
“All this is cinema, it doesn’t tackle the problems of substance. “We’re really wound up, we’re going back to battle,” he told AFP before taking part in blocking the Boulou turnpike on the French-Spanish border.
“Maybe if Macron had made this speech three weeks ago, it would have calmed the movement, but now it’s too late. For us, this speech is nonsense,” said Gaetan, 34, one of the “Rennes Lapins Jaunes” (Yellow Rabbits of Rennes).
One 35-year-old French official said that Macron “is being held hostage so he drops some crumbs.”
Meanwhile, Macron faces a no confidence vote in parliament on Thursday, after left-of-center lawmakers moved against the President.
Approximately 4,100 of the 4,523 Yellow Vest protesters arrested since the Nov 17 start of the massive demonstrations across France were thrown in jail according to French television broadcaster BFM, citing police sources. Nearly 2,000 of those arrested were arrested last Saturday during the movement’s “Act IV” protest, according to the Interior Ministry – over half of which, 1,082, occurred in Paris.
The 48-hour detentions have been criticized for denying citizens their right to demonstrate.
“By locking them up for 48 hours, they were denied the opportunity to go to a demonstration and that in a democratic country is shocking” Paris Bar attorney attorney Raphael Kempf told BFM (translated).