Édouard Philippe is preparing by wanting to “take the pulse of the country”

With trips to the field, the mayor of Le Havre and boss of the Horizons party is charting his path in view of the next presidential election.


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Édouard Philippe is preparing for the 2027 presidential election with a series of trips.  (LUC NOBOUT / MAXPPP)

The former Prime Minister begins, Tuesday February 13, three days “immersion” in Sarthe and Mayenne with health, industry and agriculture on the agenda. This is a new travel format for “take the time and soak in” more says one of his relatives. “He wants to see France as it is, to smell and take the pulse of the country.”

This is only the beginning since “things are going to go faster and faster”, assures a leading Horizons parliamentarian. Travel, a meeting of party executives in Besançon in April, then a congress in December are on the agenda. Édouard Philippe plans at that time, according to one of his relatives to franceinfo to “deliver a message and the outlines of a political project that goes further over time”. We will then be after the European elections and almost two years before the presidential election.

Édouard Philippe is working on his project, “he builds a stable and a corpus”, according to a minister. Its base remains Horizons with its mayor’s party and local elected officials. Continuing to install it allows it to “reassure oneself” another member of the executive understands. The mayor of Le Havre draws his ideas from notes produced by experts, elected officials, civil servants and a whole network of 25 working groups on themes that a president must know inside out.

On a tightrope compared to the majority

With respect to the majority, he traces his path while avoiding losing his feathers. A faithful hit, then a critical hit, like when he calls “surprising”the composition of the last government, in the Tribune Sunday. “He must not appear as the successor” by Emmanuel Macron, “but also not to cut yourself off from the base of your majority”, summarizes a Horizons framework. Behind the scenes, it is avoiding stray bullets for the moment, but it is necessary to maintain the distance that separates it from 2027. It will also be necessary to stand out from the new ones, from a “Gabriel Attal”which according to a figure of the macronie can “make everyone out of date”.

Édouard Philippe is also preparing to “an overexposure which he has made his trademark anti-brand”, according to one of his interlocutors, but not too much either. Around him, on the contrary, we think that the French “will ask for a return to something more classic”, with fewer tweets and tiktoks like Marine Le Pen does. It is also to set up the duel with the RN that he begins traveling to this France of sub-prefectures.

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