Pensions: political struggle in the Assembly

Opposition to pension reform is taking a political turn with the examination of the bill in committee and the tabling of more than 22,000 amendments!

After the street fights, the parliamentary jousting. The government’s pension reform project enters a very political phase on Monday, February 3, 2020, with the examination of the text by the “special commission” of the National Assembly, made up of 75 deputies and chaired by the LREM deputy Brigitte Bourguignon. It will be discussed in public session on February 17.
We are already heading towards a very hard political battle led by the opposition, which has tabled more than 22,000 amendments. Jean-Luc Mélenchon’s France Insoumise alone has tabled more than 19,000. While the aim of this avalanche of amendments is clearly to obstruct politics, many of these amendments also aim to improve the lot of the less well-off French people by improving the minimum amount of their pension, set at 85% of the minimum wage for a full career of 43 years.
Conversely, for the richest, the amendments tabled by the opposition consist of restoring a little more social justice. In the text submitted to MEPs, the contribution base is capped at €120,000 per year. It is currently EUR 320 000. A “solidarity contribution” of 2.81% should be levied on the highest incomes. Clearly, these provisions pave the way for the capitalisation of pensions for high income earners and, above all, deprive the common pool of substantial contributions.

Motion of censure and 49.3

In any case, there is going to be some excitement in the Hemicycle for two weeks. In addition to the discussion of each amendment, which will lead to some great skirmishes, the opposition members (BIA, PCF and PS) will table a motion of censure that could be voted on by members of the National Front. Even if it has no chance of succeeding, this motion of censure remains a form of sanction against the government of Edouard Philippe.
Opposition MPs are also considering asking that the pension reform bill be put to a referendum. But they have no chance of obtaining satisfaction.
Should the debates drag on and if he is in trouble, Edouard Philippe still has the option of cutting short the parliamentary debates and passing the pension reform bill in force. With 49.3. Article 49 paragraph 3 of the Constitution in fact allows a text to be passed without a vote, under cover of the rejection of the motion of censure that the opposition must table.
But this would not be very glorious. And we know that Edouard Philippe is not very much in favour of it after the reproaches that are made to the Executive for managing the country in an undemocratic manner. The president of the Senate, Gerard Larcher, warned: With the 49.3 “It always ends badly. »