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[Édito] Can regional elections be held in June?  – France

The health crisis does not only jeopardize our daily life and our economy. It also affects our democracy. It is true with the multiplication and the prolongation of the laws of exception which one knows that they always leave traces. This is also the case with elections, which are increasingly difficult to organize under satisfactory conditions. We have seen this with the imbalances caused by the postponement, however inevitable, of the second round of municipal elections. We can see it today with regional and departmental.

First scheduled simultaneously in March of this year, they were postponed to June. A logical decision, inspired by the report commissioned from Jean-Louis Debré, the former president of the Constitutional Council. Except that it is becoming increasingly clear that the situation will not be fundamentally different in June than in March. We should not expect a miracle from a vaccination that turns out to be quite random. The sustainability of the epidemic is such that the conditions will therefore still not be met to organize an electoral campaign worthy of the name. However, there is hardly any window possible for a new postponement.

“Most of the regional presidents are pleading for June, hoping that the current difficulties will be worth a premium to the outgoing.”

In autumn ? If the virus is then under control, the urgency will be much more to control the economic and social crisis and the launch of the presidential election. In March 2022? As the presidential election in May approaches, this is hard to imagine. After this major election, for example at the same time as the legislative elections? This would require extending the term of office of those leaving for more than a year. And that would give an additional advantage to the new head of state, who could then benefit from a legitimist vote, at the risk of unbalancing the institutions.

Most of the presidents of regions plead for June, hoping that the current difficulties will be worth a premium to the outgoing. With the risk of massive abstention. We understand the dilemma of the executive: it is a sort of squaring of the electoral circle that it must resolve.

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