March 24, 2023

POLITICS – This time it’s really gone. Since this Monday, January 30, the sixty parliamentarians of the Social Affairs Committee have been working, article by article, on the text which provides a drop in the legal age from 62 to 64 and an acceleration of the lengthening of the contribution period. The last step before the discussions in the hemicycle, which must begin from February 6 on this flagship reform of Macron’s second five-year term.

On the eve of a second day of mobilization in the streetthe deputies flocked in number to the committee for the examination of the highly contested pension reform project. The opportunity for the opposition to show that they are increasingly upset in the face of the unfailing firmness displayed by the government.

The elected representatives of the Nupes left alliance were particularly numerous, so much so that some had to settle between LR and RN, for lack of places on the left. The socialist Arthur Delaporte immediately asked for “additional days” of the exam, which normally ends on Wednesday evening. Three days of examination to compare some 7,000 amendments were tabled, including 6,000 by the left.

The tight deadlines are imposed by the vector chosen by the executive, a draft amending budget of the Sécu, which limits to fifty days in total the debates in Parliament. However, this deadline is particularly tense as the tone has gone up a notch after Prime Minister Élisabeth Borne assured Sunday that the postponement of the legal age of departure to 64 was not “more negotiable”.

Heckling and tense exchanges

And this while the left curries a text “lonely, unjust and unjustified” even “anti-women”. In response, LFI presented on Monday afternoon his “counter-proposal” which notably provides for retirement at age 60 with 40 annual payments, and a pension of at least 1,600 euros for all full careers.

The elected representatives of the left effectively oppose the 64-year-olds as a whole and refuse to obstruct, avoiding purely formal amendments. “We will adapt our tactics as we go along, we want Article 7 to be discussed” on age, said the Insoumise Clémentine Autain.

The RN deputies are fighting the postponement of the age, but reserve their forces for the hemicycle. For its part, the right, whose votes are crucial for the text to be adopted, is raising the stakes. The LRs have made specific demands for women with choppy careers, for employees who started working at the age of 20, on family rights or even a postponement of the entry into force of the reform.

Whether or not it is adopted in committee, the draft will be presented in session on 6 February. The rule for budgetary texts requires that it is the initial version which is submitted, without the amendments adopted in committee. Two weeks of discussions are scheduled in the hemicycle.

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