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Robert Schuman, who was twice Prime Minister and at other times Minister of Finance and Foreign Minister, was instrumental in building post-war European and trans-Atlantic institutions.

A devout Catholic and anti-Communist, he led France into the European Union, the Council of Europe and NATO.

Despite de Gaulle's so-called discourse of Bayeux of 16 June 1946 in which he denounced the new institutions, the new draft was approved by 53% of voters voting in favor (with an abstention rate of 31%) in the referendum held on 13 October 1946.

This culminated in the establishment in the following year of the Fourth Republic, an arrangement in which executive power essentially resided in the hands of the President of the Council (the prime minister).

For the 1946 elections, the Rally of Left Republicans (Rassemblement des gauches républicaines, RGR), which encompassed the Radical-Socialist Party, the Democratic and Socialist Union of the Resistance and other conservative parties, unsuccessfully attempted to oppose the Christian democrat and socialist MRP–SFIO–PCF alliance.

For instance, under the new Constitution, the President of the Council was the leader of the executive branch (Prime Minister of France).Georges Bidault of the MRP replaced Felix Gouin as the head of government.A new draft of the Constitution was written, which this time proposed the establishment of a bicameral form of government.The United States helped revive the French economy with the Marshall Plan (1948–1951), whereby it gave France .3 billion with no repayment.France was the second largest recipient after Britain.

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