Elisabeth Borne, the favorite for Matignon?

How many days after the second round does a president of the republic announce the name of his prime minister? Differs. Jacques Chirac appointed Jean-Pierre Raffarin the day after his re-election, Nicolas Sarkozy took eleven days to announce the arrival of François Fillon in Matignon, François Hollande nine for Jean-Marc Ayrault. Five years ago, Emmanuel Macron waited eight days to appoint Édouard Philippe. On Friday, May 6, we’re on D+12 and still no white smoke on the horizon. According to many observers of political life, one name seems to tick all the boxes: that of Elisabeth Borne who has just been invested in Calvados for the next parliamentary elections.

A woman on the left

During his first five-year term, Emmanuel Macron appointed two prime ministers from the right. For a president who wants to embody it “at the same time”, the choice to place a personality of the left with Matignon seems essential. This would also make it possible to attract social democracy profiles who view the PS-LFI alliance with a very weak view. Fortunately, Elisabeth Borne is cataloged on the left. Admittedly, she was never included in the Feast of Roses. But the polytechnic has spent much of her career in PS companies. She was a technical advisor for transport in Matignon under Lionel Jospin, she worked with Jack Lang at the Ministry of National Education. From 2008 to 2013, she also held the position of Director-General for Urban Planning at the Paris City Hall, then under the direction of Bertrand Delanoë. Finally, under the mandate of François Hollande, she was Ségolène Royal’s chief of staff at the Ministry of Ecology. Her career in the ministerial mysteries makes her familiar with political issues and proficient in technical and administrative matters (knowledge enhanced by her appointment as Prefect of the Poitou-Charentes region).

A private trip

Until a few years ago, ministers from the business community were viewed with restraint. The passages of Thierry Breton or Christine Lagarde in Bercy proved that it was possible to have a real sense of state despite a past as a company director. Elisabeth Borne, for her part, knows the business world well. In particular, she was Director of Strategy for SNCF from 2002 to 2007 and CEO of RATP from 2015 to 2017.

Successful passages in sensitive ministries

Elisabeth Borne remained a member of the government for the term of five years. With relative discretion, she nevertheless held strategic portfolios and managed to make progress. As Minister of Transport, she maneuvers to carry out the “sea serpent” that is the reform of the SNCF: transformation of the company’s statute, cessation of recruitment to the statute, takeover by the Group’s debt status…

After the “lobstergate”, she replaced François de Rugy at the head of the Ministry of the Environment. A passage of less than a year in which she successfully completed three laws initiated by her predecessors: the energy climate law, the mobility orientation law and the circular economy law. When Jean Castex was appointed in July 2020, she took over from Muriel Pénicaud at the head of the Ministry of Labour, Employment and Integration, where she took on the sensitive issue of pension reform. The past five years therefore provide him with expertise on social and environmental issues that should be at the heart of the next cabinet.

No political danger

Even if Emmanuel Macron can no longer run in 2027, a head of state of course suffers from the “Iznogood syndrome”. He is afraid to appoint a vizier who dreams of becoming caliph instead of caliph. This fear is shared by all who hope to occupy the Élysée Palace in five years. Élisabeth Borne is known as a woman of files who pursues more than a profile for the presidency, but does not appear to pose any political danger. Which certainly explains why his praise is regularly braided, from Horizons to Territories of progress.

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