France's dissolution of parliament, snap elections: What happens next?

French President Emmanuel Macron announced on June 9 that he was dissolving the National Assembly and calling for new parliamentary elections following the far right’s landslide victory in the European elections. The elections for France’s lower house of parliament, conducted over two rounds, will be held on June 30 and July 7.

Macron reacted to the far right’s overwhelming victory in the European elections with the risky decision to dissolve the National Assembly. The far-right Rassemblement National (National Rally or RN) won 31% of the vote, more than twice that of the president’s Renaissance party, at 14.6%.

In his televised address on Sunday, Macron said that the European vote was “not a good result for the parties that defend Europe [...] So I cannot pretend that nothing has happened”.

An early election to ask voters to choose a new parliament would allow what he called a “clarification” of the political scene.

What is a dissolution?

According to article 12 of the French Constitution, the president can dissolve the National Assembly before the end of its term, leading to snap elections. The current parliament was set to continue in office until 2027.

The article also says that “general elections shall be held not less than twenty nor more than forty days after the dissolution”.

Legislative 'work in progress’

The dissolution of the Assembly means that all legislative proposals currently being examined are suspended.


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