Last Sunday saw the Italian people voted for what is to be the 70th government in 75 years, quite impressive. The main theme of this election was Immigration and the Economy, as economic stagnation and high rates of unemployment did nothing to help the people’s attitude to irregular migrants. Here are some of the main points regarding Italy’s political scene at Italy’s as it currently is.
Partito Democratico (18.9%) (-9%)
Many factors contributed to this major shift, but the top of them all is the party itself which in all but words, killed itself in the run-up to this election. With happenings including the aforementioned economic atmosphere, a failed attempt to make significant changes to the constitution and leader Matteo Renzi’s lack of popularity with the people, amongst others, the PD took a blow.
Forza Italia (13.94%) (-7.66%)
Although part of the biggest coalition, Forza Italia, led by office-barred Berlusconi, is no longer the biggest party within the alliance as regional force Lega enjoyed unexpectedly strong support from the entire nation. That leaves the former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi lacking the electoral authority he needs if he wants to act as an influential motor in the formation of a new government.
Lega Nord (17.69%) (+13.59%)
As mentioned previously, up until the last election, Lega was, naturally – a strictly regional force. A strong nationwide vote though has unexpectedly turned it into the senior partner of the right-wing coalition, strengthening Matteo Salvini’s hand in government negotiations. In a nutshell, Matteo Salvini took the place Berlusconi had up until before the election, as a showing of Italy’s shift to the further right.
Movimento Cinque Stelle (32.33%) (+6.62%)
Even though they had many against them, and the party also rejected any negotiations for a potential alliance along the entire campaign, the Five Star Movement did very well even in the “first-past-the-post seats”, part of the new, complex electoral system this time. As the second largest force in parliament, that is, if another right-wing majority coalition force is formed and Cinque Stelle remain as they are, they could be instrumental in the formation of a government. Irrelevant of what happens from now on, this party is by far the largest party in Italy, a showing of how very relevant Beppe Grillo’s call was about 10 years ago when the party was founded.
The next step is for the president to choose a prime minister up until the new government is formed. Due to Berlusconi’s alliance of politicians and what they’ve done everytime they were in government, it is quite foreseeable that Luigi Di Maio is chosen to lead the country until a new governing coalition is formed.
As for the EU, Italy will not leave, but it will stop being the pillar of unity that it has always acted as, and Macron and Merkel will definitely find it harder to make the major EU reforms they may have had in mind…not a good run of years for the Union, though that will be discussed in another article.
Images: 1,3,4,5 – www.theguardian.com
2 – A Bird’s Eye View
Written by: Gianluca Vella