Édouard Philippe

Édouard Charles Philippe (French: [edwaʁ ʃaʁl filip]; born 28 November 1970) is a French politician serving as Mayor of Le Havre since 2020, previously holding the office from 2010 to 2017.[1] He was Prime Minister of France from 15 May 2017 to 3 July 2020 under President Emmanuel Macron.[2]

Édouard Philippe
Édouard Philippe 2019 (cropped).jpg
Philippe in 2019.
President of Le Havre Seine Métropole
Assumed office
5 July 2020
Preceded byJean-Baptiste Gastinne
Mayor of Le Havre
Assumed office
5 July 2020
Preceded byJean-Baptiste Gastinne
In office
23 October 2010 – 20 May 2017
Preceded byAntoine Rufenacht
Succeeded byLuc Lemonnier
Prime Minister of France
In office
15 May 2017 – 3 July 2020
PresidentEmmanuel Macron
Preceded byBernard Cazeneuve
Succeeded byJean Castex
Member of the National Assembly
for Seine-Maritime's 7th constituency
In office
23 March 2012 – 15 June 2017
Preceded byJean-Yves Besselat
Succeeded byJean-Louis Rousselin
President of the
Agglomeration community of Le Havre
In office
18 December 2010 – 25 June 2017
Preceded byAntoine Rufenacht
Succeeded byLuc Lemonnier
Personal details
Édouard Charles Philippe

(1970-11-28) 28 November 1970 (age 50)
Rouen, Normandy, France
Political partyIndependent (2018–present)
Other political
Socialist Party (1990s)
Union for a Popular Movement (2002–2015)
The Republicans (2015–2018)
Spouse(s)Édith Chabre
EducationLycée Janson-de-Sailly
Alma materSciences Po
École nationale d'administration

A lawyer by occupation, Philippe is a former member of the Union for a Popular Movement (UMP), which later became The Republicans (LR). He served as a member of the National Assembly from 2012 to 2017, representing the seventh constituency of Seine-Maritime. After being elected to the presidency on 7 May 2017, Macron appointed him Prime Minister of France. Philippe subsequently named his government on 17 May. He was succeeded by Jean Castex before his reelection to the mayorship in Le Havre.

Early life and educationEdit

Édouard Philippe, the son of French teachers, was born in Rouen in 1970 and grew up in a left-wing household. He has one sibling, a sister.[3] He comes from a family of dockworkers, a profession in which members of his family are still employed.[4] He grew up in a suburban neighbourhood in Rouen. He was at first a pupil at the Michelet School in Rouen before moving to Grand-Quevilly where he attended Jean-Texier College and later attending Lycée les Bruyères in Sotteville-lès-Rouen.[5]

He obtained his baccalauréat at the École de Gaulle-Adenauer in Bonn, and after a year in hypokhâgne, he studied at Sciences Po for three years and graduated in 1992, and later studied at the École nationale d'administration (ÉNA) from 1995 to 1997 (the "Marc Bloch cohort").[6][7]

Philippe served as an artillery officer during his national service in 1994. He continued to serve in the operational reserve for several years afterwards.[8]

In his years at Sciences Po, he supported Michel Rocard and was influenced by him, identifying with the Rocardian and social democratic wings of the Socialist Party. His brief flirtation with the Socialists ended after Rocard was toppled from the leadership of the Socialist Party. After leaving the ÉNA in 1997, he went on to work at the Council of State,[6][7] specialising in public procurement law.[9]

Political careerEdit

In 2001, Philippe joined Antoine Rufenacht as Deputy Mayor of Le Havre charged with legal affairs;[10] Rufenacht served as mayor of Le Havre from 1995 to 2010 and campaign director for Jacques Chirac in the 2002 presidential election.[7] Recognising the ideological proximity between Michel Rocard and Alain Juppé, Philippe supported the latter at the time of the creation of the Union for a Popular Movement (UMP) in 2002, marking the end of his left-wing activism;[7] the same year, he failed to win his constituency in the legislative elections.[9] He served under Juppé as director general of services of the UMP until 2004, when the mayor of Bordeaux was convicted as a result of the fictitious jobs case implicating the Rally for the Republic (RPR). He then took a job in the private sector, working with the American law firm Debevoise & Plimpton LLP,[6][7] and was elected to the regional council of Upper Normandy the same year.[10]

In the wake of Nicolas Sarkozy's victory in the 2007 presidential election, Philippe briefly returned to political life working for Alain Juppé, when Juppé served briefly as Minister of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy, before being appointed Director of Public Affairs at Areva, where he worked from 2007 to 2010.[7] He was also substitute to Jean-Yves Besselat, who served as the member of the National Assembly for Seine-Maritime's 7th constituency from 2007 to 2012.[6] In 2008, he was elected to the general council of Seine-Maritime in the canton of Le Havre-5,[11] and in 2010 was elected mayor of Le Havre after the resignation of Rufenacht,[7] his mentor,[6] and also became President of the Agglomeration community of Le Havre the same year.[10] After Besselat's death in 2012 following a long illness, Philippe took his seat,[12] successfully holding it in the subsequent legislative elections.[7] He was reelected as Mayor of Le Havre in the 2014 municipal elections in the first round, with an absolute majority of 52.04% of expressed votes.[11] Following his resignation on 20 May 2017 as Le Havre Mayor, he retains a seat in the municipal council.

2017 presidential electionEdit

He worked for the campaign of Alain Juppé in the primary of the right and centre in 2016, serving as a spokesperson alongside Benoist Apparu.[13] Though Philippe and Apparu, as well as Christophe Béchu, later joined the campaign of François Fillon for the 2017 presidential election after his victory in the primary, the three parliamentarians – close to Juppé – quit on 2 March 2017 after the candidate was summoned to appear before judges amidst the Fillon affair.[7][14] He said he would not seek to retain his seat in the legislative elections in June to avoid breaching the law limiting the accumulation of mandates. Following the victory of Emmanuel Macron in the presidential election, there was speculation that Philippe was a potential choice for Prime Minister, representing three essential aspects: political renewal (at the age of only 46), affiliation with the moderate right, and familiarity with the political terrain.[7]

Prime MinisterEdit

Aggregated opinion polls ("political barometers") monitoring Philippe's approval

On 15 May 2017, Philippe was appointed as Prime Minister by Emmanuel Macron after speculation he was a contender for the office alongside former Ecology Minister Jean-Louis Borloo, MoDem Leader François Bayrou and IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde.[15][16]

Philippe (centre) with Senate President Gérard Larcher (left) and then-National Assembly President François de Rugy (right) on Armistice Day, 11 November 2017

In the June 2017 legislative elections, Macron's party, renamed "La République En Marche!", together with its ally the Democratic Movement (MoDem), secured a comfortable majority, winning 350 seats out of 577, with his party alone winning an outright majority of 308 seats. Philippe is a member of The Republicans though he campaigned for La République En Marche! due to the party supporting his role as Prime Minister. He formed the Second Philippe government on 21 May 2017 following a series of resignations after scandal embroiled Ministers François Bayrou, Sylvie Goulard, Marielle de Sarnez and Richard Ferrand. This diminished Democratic Movement's representation in the government significantly.[17][18][19][20]

Philippe secured a vote of confidence and was allowed to govern with a majority government on 4 July 2017. He was confirmed with a vote of 370 against 67.[21] Following the vote, Philippe addressed the parliament, talking about plans to tackle France's debt by raising cigarette tax and cutting spending.[22] Philippe also talked about plans to reduce corporate tax from 33.3% to 25% by 2022.[23] Philippe announced the government's labour reform plan which will give companies more power when it comes to negotiating conditions directly with their employees.[24] Labour reform was one of Macron's biggest election promises and has been seen as the government's biggest economic reform.[25]

On 12 July 2017, Philippe announced a new immigration plan. The plan attempts to speed up asylum claims from fourteen months to six, provide housing for 7,500 refugees by the end of 2019, improve living conditions for minors and deport economic migrants[26][27] The draft of the law will be introduced in September.[28]

On 3 July 2020, Philippe resigned as the French Prime Minister,[29] and ran successfully in the 2020 Le Havre mayoral election.[citation needed]


In October 2020, Philippe was one of several current and former government officials whose home was searched by French authorities following complaints about the government's handling of the COVID-19 pandemic in France.[30]

Personal lifeEdit

Philippe is married to Édith Chabre, the executive director of the School of Law at Sciences Po.[31][32] They have three children.[33][34]

Since the middle of the 2010s, Philippe has sported a short beard. He is the first Prime Minister with facial hair since Henri Queuille (Prime Minister in 1951) and the first one with a full beard since Alexandre Ribot (Prime Minister last in 1917). Further, he is one of a few Prime Ministers in the last century (Henri Queuille, Raymond Barre, Francois Fillon, Jean-Marc Ayrault) to be older than the president he served under, by an unprecedented seven years.

As Prime Minister, he announced that he had vitiligo, a skin disease responsible for the noticeable white patch of hair on his beard.[35]


Ribbon bar Honour Date and comment
  Grand Officer of the Order of the Legion of Honour 2020
  Grand Cross of the National Order of Merit 22 November 2017 – by right as Prime Minister

Foreign honoursEdit

Ribbon bar Country Honour Date
  Australia Honorary Officer of the Order of Australia 11 November 2018
  Senegal Grand Cross of the Order of Merit 2019

Published worksEdit

Édouard Philippe dedicating Impressions and clear lines in Fontainebleau, on 29 June 2021.

Philippe has co-authored two works of fiction:

  • With Gilles Boyer (2007). L'Heure de vérité. Flammarion. ISBN 9782081237728.
  • With Gilles Boyer (2011). Dans l'ombre. Jean-Claude Lattès. ISBN 9782709637558. This political thriller recounts a presidential election mired in tricks and betrayals, culminating with the unmasking of the to-be-appointed Prime Minister's criminal history in extremis.[36]
  • Des hommes qui lisent. Jean-Claude Lattès. 2017. ISBN 9782709661430.

In 2015, he prefaced Promenades avec Oscar Niemeyer by Danielle Knapp, published by Petit à Petit.


  1. ^ "As it happened: France's local elections see Greens surge, far-right win Perpignan". 28 June 2020.
  2. ^ Chazan, David (3 July 2020). "Edouard Philippe resigns as French prime minister". The Telegraph. ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved 3 July 2020.
  3. ^ "Les moments-clés de la vie politique d'Edouard Philippe". Le Monde.fr (in French). 15 May 2017. ISSN 1950-6244. Retrieved 6 August 2017.
  4. ^ "Edouard Philippe, un fidèle juppéiste qui s'affranchit pour recomposer". lesechos.fr (in French). 15 May 2017. Retrieved 6 August 2017.
  5. ^ "La jeunesse rouennaise d'Edouard Philippe". www.paris-normandie.fr (in French). Retrieved 6 August 2017.
  6. ^ a b c d e Valérie Peiffer; Pierre Simon; Pascal Mateo (16 December 2010). "Edouard Philippe de A à Z". Le Point. Retrieved 15 May 2017.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Jules Pecnard (10 May 2017). "Trois choses à savoir sur Edouard Philippe, le potentiel futur Premier ministre". L'Express. Retrieved 15 May 2017.
  8. ^ "Prime Minister". Gouvernement.fr. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  9. ^ a b Justine Chevalier (11 May 2017). "Qui est Edouard Philippe, juppéiste pressenti pour être Premier ministre?". BFM TV. Retrieved 14 May 2017.
  10. ^ a b c "Biographie et actualités de Edouard Philippe". France Inter. Retrieved 15 May 2017.
  11. ^ a b "Edouard Philippe : Biographie et articles". Le Point. Retrieved 15 May 2017.
  12. ^ "Jean-Yves Besselat, député UMP de Seine-Maritime, est mort". Le Monde. 23 March 2017. Retrieved 15 May 2017.
  13. ^ Damien Fleurot (14 October 2014). "QG, porte-parole: Alain Juppé lance sa campagne". BFM TV. Retrieved 15 May 2017.
  14. ^ "Les juppéistes Apparu, Philippe et Béchu se retirent de la campagne Fillon". Le Figaro. Agence France-Presse. 2 March 2017. Retrieved 15 May 2017.
  15. ^ "Quel Premier ministre souhaitez-vous voir nommé par Macron ? Christine Lagarde a les faveurs des Français" (in French), 5 May 2017, by Alexandre Decroix. Published by LCI.
  16. ^ "Le premier ministre Philippe prépare " un gouvernement rassembleur de compétences "". Le Monde. 15 May 2017. Retrieved 15 May 2017.
  17. ^ "Top Macron ally Bayrou quits French government". BBC News. 21 June 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  18. ^ "French Defense Minister Sylvie Goulard asks to step down amid probe". POLITICO. 20 June 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  19. ^ "François Bayrou, Marielle de Sarnez resign from French government: report". POLITICO. 21 June 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  20. ^ "Emmanuel Macron's close ally Richard Ferrand to resign from Cabinet; to seek leadership role in En Marche". Firstpost. 20 June 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  21. ^ "French PM Edouard Philippe wins confidence vote, vows to cut budget deficit". Firstpost. 5 July 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  22. ^ "French PM Edouard Philippe wins confidence vote". Jagranjosh.com. 5 January 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  23. ^ "French PM says time to end addiction to public spending - France 24". France 24. 4 July 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  24. ^ "France unveils pro business reform plan". www.enca.com. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  25. ^ "Parliament votes massively in favour of cost-cutting reforms". RFI. 4 July 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  26. ^ "French PM lays out new migrant plan, offers no 'magic wand'". ABC News. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  27. ^ "Edouard Philippe: France will maintain border controls until November". POLITICO. 12 July 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  28. ^ "France to boost refugee aid, deport economic migrants - France 24". France 24. 12 July 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  29. ^ "France's Macron picks Jean Castex as PM after Philippe resigns". BBC News. 3 July 2020. Retrieved 4 July 2020.
  30. ^ Merlin Sugue (15 October 2020), French police search health minister’s home as part of coronavirus inquiry Politico Europe.
  31. ^ "School of Law". Sciences Po. 17 October 2016. Retrieved 17 May 2017.
  32. ^ "Qui est la "très discrète" Edith Chabre, épouse d'Edouard Philippe, le nouveau Premier ministre?". France Soir. 16 May 2017. Retrieved 17 May 2017.
  33. ^ "All you need to know about France's little-known Prime Minister Edouard Philippe". The Local France. 15 May 2017. Retrieved 15 May 2017.
  34. ^ "Session 1: Building a Smart Port City for today and tomorrow (Durban)". 14th World Conference Cities and Ports. Retrieved 15 May 2017.
  35. ^ "Qu'est-ce que le vitiligo, l'affection de la peau dont est atteint Edouard Philippe ?".
  36. ^ Alain Auffray (15 May 2017). "Edouard Philippe, la transgression à Matignon". Libération. Retrieved 16 May 2017.

External linksEdit

National Assembly of France
Preceded by
Jean-Yves Besselat
Member of the National Assembly
for Seine-Maritime's 7th constituency

Succeeded by
Jean-Louis Rousselin
Political offices
Preceded by
Antoine Rufenacht
Mayor of Le Havre
Succeeded by
Luc Lemonnier
President of the Agglomeration community of Le Havre
Preceded by
Bernard Cazeneuve
Prime Minister of France
Succeeded by
Jean Castex
Preceded by
Gérard Collomb
Minister of the Interior

Succeeded by
Christophe Castaner
Order of precedence
Preceded by
Bernard Cazeneuve
as Former Prime Minister
Order of precedence of France
Former Prime Minister
Succeeded by
Bruno Lasserre
as President of the Council of State