Emmanuel Macron has been President of France for exactly one week today and although it’s still very early to be make any definitive assessments, it is becoming increasingly clear what type of leader he will be.
On Sunday, March 14th, Macron was inaugurated in Paris. The inauguration ceremony was not nearly as controversial as the last one in recent memory, but was historic nonetheless. Macron was officially installed as the youngest president in modern French history. Handing over the reigns was former President François Hollande, who grew increasingly unpopular over the course of his presidency.
Since the inauguration, Macron has already made waves in the mainstream news media. In days following the election, a video of Macron from this past February resurfaced on social media. In it, Macron invites “American researchers, entrepreneurs, engineers working on climate change” to collaborate with the French. Many shared the video in celebration of Macron’s victory. It was also used to highlight the stark difference in attitude between the new president of France and the president of the United States, Donald Trump.
Another topic of conversation surrounding the new President has been about his wife. French First Lady Brigitte Trogneux is 24 years Macron’s senior and his former teacher. Since his election, their unconventional relationship has captivated the world. Historically, French First Ladies occupy a smaller role than in the United States. While campaigning, however, Macron said that he would likely appoint Trogneux to an official administrative position.
A third wave of Macron media attention came last Wednesday when he announced his cabinet picks. As promised, the new president nominated women to fill half of his team. He follows in the footsteps of progressive Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. As for prime minister, Macron nominated moderate conservative Edouard Philippe. Macron has also expressed interested in fostering bipartisanship relationships.
With his first week behind him as the president of France, Emmanuel Macron falls at a 62 percent approval rating. French conservatives and former supporters of Marine Le Pen, of course, make up the majority who do not approve. We are what seems like seconds into his presidency, but so far Macron has held true to his progressive promises from the campaign trail. This to the dismay of conservative voters and the joy of liberals in France and around the world.