"The words in these periods are easily excessive, I would not have said things like that," said the ally of the head of state on franceinfo. For him, "demonstrations have their legitimacy but it is not a legitimacy superior to democratic legitimacy".

Recalling that Mr Macron's expression referred to Victor Hugo who makes "the distinction between the crowd and the people", he insisted: "I would not deny the legitimacy of the demonstrations, something is expressed that is very important for the people who come there".

"It is for me the symptom of this incommunicability in which we find ourselves between the official powers and the basic citizens," he analyzed, evoking "this kind of glass wall" that "must be blown up".

The mayor of Pau also regretted the term "victory" used, according to participants, by Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne during a meeting Tuesday at the Elysee with the tenors of the government and the majority.

"You know well that I do not share this expression: it is neither a success nor a victory, it is simply the outcome of a period of very difficult tensions, the institutional outcome, after which remains the outcome in the people."

© 2023 AFP