"French President Emmanuel Macron took office in May 2017 promising to shake up a political system he characterized as out of touch, revive the stagnant French economy, and revitalize French leadership of the 28-member European Union (EU). Since that time, he has sought to advance a centrist, reform-oriented domestic agenda while pursuing a 'traditional' French foreign and defense policy that emphasizes European integration and a strong French presence in global affairs. Although Macron has the support of a solid majority in the French parliament, he faces challenges in advancing his ambitious policy agenda, both at home and abroad. Domestically, France has suffered a number of deadly terrorist attacks since January 2015, and some powerful labor unions oppose key elements of Macron's proposed economic reforms. At the European level, the EU is facing some of the most significant challenges of its 60-year history, including the planned withdrawal of the United Kingdom (also referred to as Brexit), tensions related to an upsurge in migrants and refugees to Europe, heightened terrorist threats, and Russian aggression."
CRS Report for Congress, R45167