A little after Wednesday night, the French Senate approved raising the minimum retirement age from 62 to 64 thanks to votes from right-wing parties.
Article 7 of the pension reform proposed by President Emmanuel Macron was approved with 201 votes in favor, 115 votes against, and 29 abstentions. This happened after a debate that lasted more than 15 hours.
During that time, leftist lawmakers filed hundreds of amendments to prevent the approval of the increase in the minimum retirement age. However, the benches of the right-wing parties resorted to an exceptional device that allowed them to bypass those amendments.
Labor Minister Olivier Dussopt said that he was satisfied with the result. However, the approval of this aspect of the pension reform will still have to be reconciled between the two parliamentary chambers.
Besides praising the “responsible” behavior of the Senate, he expressed his wish that all the articles of the Macron reform can be discussed and approved until Sunday, which is the deadline for their processing in the Senate.
The tweet reads, “Blockade of the train tracks at Marseille’s Gare Saint-Charles as part of the third day of the general strike against the pension reform.”
Beyond the parliamentary process, which could end next week, Macron will face massive protests organized by all unions, which have reached unprecedented levels of collective coordination and action.
The response of the citizens to the political class did not wait. On Thursday, the General Confederation of Labor (CGT) called to continue the protests against the pension reform bill.
“This will be a day of energy sobriety,” the largest French union announced, warning that power cuts would take place even at the Stade de France and the Olympic village grounds.
“Fuel shipments and various ports also remain blocked in all parts of France,” The Figaro newspaper reported, adding that university students and high school students will held a large demonstration in Paris.