The French Senate passed the controversial Pension ReformEU | March 12, 2023, Sunday // 10:16| views
The upper house of the French parliament - the Senate - adopted the controversial pension reform, which caused a wave of protests throughout France and was considered a key measure of Emmanuel Macron's second presidential term, BTA reported.
"An important milestone has been overcome," said French Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne.
The reform was adopted after 100 hours of debate in the Senate with 195 votes "in favor" and 112 votes "against". A key measure in the reform is raising the retirement age from 62 to 64.
The reform has sparked seven nationwide protests, the latest of which was yesterday, as well as a wave of strike action across the country.
The reform will now be re-examined by a joint committee made up of MPs from the lower and upper houses. That will probably happen on Wednesday. If the committee agrees on the text, there will be a final vote in both chambers on Thursday. But the outcome in the lower house, the National Assembly, remains unclear. There, Macron's party needs allies to achieve a majority on this issue.
If the government fails to gather a majority, it is possible to push the text according to the procedure under Article 49.3 of the Constitution, which provides for the adoption of a legislative text without a parliamentary vote.
There will be new nationwide protests against the reform on Wednesday.
While the Senate was finishing its review of the bill yesterday, hundreds of thousands of people again protested across France against the pension reform and especially against Article 7 of the bill to raise the retirement age from 62 to 64 years.
In February, the National Assembly was literally flooded with proposals for amendments to the bill submitted by the left union, and the MPs did not even manage to consider the controversial Article 7 and ended the debates there without a vote.
Now in the Senate, where the core of the left - "La France Insoumise" - has no deputies, the debates were again lively, but to speed things up, the Minister of Labor Olivier Dassault decided to apply Article 44.3 of the Constitution, allowing a vote on the entire text, without voting on the proposals for amendments that the government does not approve.
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