Pension reform: can the cross-partisan censure motion succeed?

Jacques Serais and Alexandre Chauveau, edited by Alexandre Dalifard
modified to

1:25 p.m., March 17, 2023

While Prime Minister Élisabeth Borne resorted to 49.3 on Thursday to push through the pension reform in the National Assembly, the parties opposed to the bill announce that they want to table motions of censure. A question arises in the face of this: is the government threatened by them?

There will therefore have been no vote on the pension reform. Uncertain about the outcome of a potential ballot, Emmanuel Macron and Elisabeth Borne have chosen to go through 49.3. The article of the Constitution now allows the opposition to file motions of censure aimed at bringing down the government and at the same time, rendering the reform project obsolete. These should be debated in the hemicycle on Monday. Faced with this, is the government threatened today? Could any of these censure motions succeed?

The LIOT group, the only threat

Only one motion of censure could possibly be threatening: that of the centrist group LIOT, Libertés, Indépendants, Outre-mer et Territoires, which they must file this Friday afternoon before 3:20 p.m., i.e. 24 hours after the announcement of the use of 49.3 by the Prime Minister. If it is an initiative of the smallest group of the National Assembly, 20 deputies, it is indeed the only motion likely to collect the votes of the deputies of the Nupes like that of the elected members of the National Rally . But pay attention to certain conditions. To succeed, the transpartisan motion must receive an absolute majority, or 287 votes.

In other words, the votes of the deputies of the Nupes, the National Rally, the LIOT group and the non-registered alone would not be enough. Because today, this group of oppositions represents only 262 votes. Here again, it is the votes of the Republican deputies that promise to be decisive. To achieve an absolute majority, at least 25 LR votes would be needed. The elected LRs are therefore once again the object of all the desires of the supporters of the motion of censure.

A call “to LR colleagues”

“If we want it to be voted on, it must be supported by as many people as possible”, reaffirms Bertrand Pancher, president of the LIOT group in the Assembly. “And so I wanted to appeal to my LR colleagues who voted against the pension reform by telling them ‘Join us, don’t be afraid and vote for this motion of censure'”, he adds at the microphone of Europe 1.

Despite everything, the rallying of as many LR deputies seems unlikely at this stage. The leadership of the Republicans ensures that his group will not support any rebellion.

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