en-fr  Five Stars victory marks end of Italy's second Republic
Five Stars victory marks end of Italy's second Republic.

Sunday's election is an earthquake in Italian politics, analogous to the so-called end of the First Republic. If Europe sees the two most likely outcomes as a choice between the devil and the deep blue sea, it has partly itself to blame.

By Kay Wallace, R.It, (La Repubblica), March 5, 2018.

Sunday’s Italian election produced two winners, or no winner, depending on how you look at it.

The populist Five Star Movement, led by 31-year-old Luigi di Maio, was the undisputed winner of the popular vote. With 32%, it swept aside the Democratic Party (PD), which failed to reach 19%.

The other big winner was the right-wing La Lega (the League). Although it polled slightly less than the PD, with over 17%, this was a huge increase on previous results, and a great personal victory for its young leader Matteo Salvini.

But no one party or grouping reached the 40% necessary to form a stable parliamentary majority. The largest group achieving anything near this was the right-wing coalition formed by Berlusconi’s Forza Italia (FI), La Lega (the League) and the Brothers of Italy (Fd’I) with 35%, more or less as predicted. What the opinion polls did not predict was that La Lega would emerge stronger that Berlusconi’s FI, which dropped to 14%, making Salvini the right’s undisputed candidate for premier.

With no clear victor, it is now up to the President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella, to decide which party leader to ask to try to form a government, the obvious choice being between Salvini and Di Maio.

Make no mistake, this is an earthquake in Italian politics, analogous to the so-called end of the First Republic. When the corruption scandal known as Tangentopoli swept away the old political guard that had ruled Italy since the beginning of the Republic, destroying the Christian Democrat party and sending the Socialist leader Bettino Craxi into exile, it left a political vacuum which was filled with amazing alacrity by Berlusconi and his Forza Italia political machine. Since then, FI and the increasingly centrist heirs to Italy’s Communist Party have ruled the “Second Republic”. Sunday’s election marks the end of their era. PD leader Matteo Renzi has resigned.

Italy now seems to face a choice between a right-wing coalition led by Salvini and the Five Star populists. The growth of populism and the right is a general trend in Europe, largely fuelled by two issues, austerity and immigration, both of which have hit Italians particularly hard. Both the parties that have gained most in this election are anti-immigration and Eurosceptic. "I thank (European Commission President Jean-Claude) Juncker for the words he said in the election campaign (against populism),” Salvini said, “because the more he speaks the more votes we get. Let's hope he stays president of the European Commission for the shortest time possible.” If Europe sees the two most likely outcomes of the Italian election as a choice between the devil and the deep blue sea, it has partly itself to blame. It has done far too little to help Italy deal with the massive influx of migrants across the deep blue Mediterranean, 640,000 in the last four years. Insisting that arrivals are processed in the EU country where they touch land has left frontline countries with an intolerable burden that has fuelled anti-immigrant and anti-EU sentiment. As demonstrated by the fact that although much-liked personally, former foreign minister and European Commissioner Emma Bonino’s +Europa (More Europe) received 2.6%, of the vote, below the entry bar of 3%.

Despite many similarities in their programmes, both Di Maio and Salvini have ruled out joining forces. The Five Star Movement has always vowed it would never ally itself with any of the traditional parties, and is difficult to see where the right would get the extra votes it needs to reach 40%. Despite the clear winners and losers, we are not much nearer knowing what the next Italian government will look like than we were yesterday. One thing we can say, is that it unlikely to look like any we’ve seen before.

http://www.repubblica.it/politica/2018/03/05/news/italian_elections_m5s_wins-190525567/
unit 1
Five Stars victory marks end of Italy's second Republic.
0 Translations, 0 Upvotes, Last Activity None
unit 4
By Kay Wallace, R.It, (La Repubblica), March 5, 2018.
0 Translations, 0 Upvotes, Last Activity None
unit 8
The other big winner was the right-wing La Lega (the League).
0 Translations, 0 Upvotes, Last Activity None
unit 17
Sunday’s election marks the end of their era.
0 Translations, 0 Upvotes, Last Activity None
unit 18
PD leader Matteo Renzi has resigned.
0 Translations, 0 Upvotes, Last Activity None

Five Stars victory marks end of Italy's second Republic.

Sunday's election is an earthquake in Italian politics, analogous to the so-called end of the First Republic. If Europe sees the two most likely outcomes as a choice between the devil and the deep blue sea, it has partly itself to blame.

By Kay Wallace, R.It, (La Repubblica), March 5, 2018.

Sunday’s Italian election produced two winners, or no winner, depending on how you look at it.

The populist Five Star Movement, led by 31-year-old Luigi di Maio, was the undisputed winner of the popular vote. With 32%, it swept aside the Democratic Party (PD), which failed to reach 19%.

The other big winner was the right-wing La Lega (the League). Although it polled slightly less than the PD, with over 17%, this was a huge increase on previous results, and a great personal victory for its young leader Matteo Salvini.

But no one party or grouping reached the 40% necessary to form a stable parliamentary majority. The largest group achieving anything near this was the right-wing coalition formed by Berlusconi’s Forza Italia (FI), La Lega (the League) and the Brothers of Italy (Fd’I) with 35%, more or less as predicted. What the opinion polls did not predict was that La Lega would emerge stronger that Berlusconi’s FI, which dropped to 14%, making Salvini the right’s undisputed candidate for premier.

With no clear victor, it is now up to the President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella, to decide which party leader to ask to try to form a government, the obvious choice being between Salvini and Di Maio.

Make no mistake, this is an earthquake in Italian politics, analogous to the so-called end of the First Republic. When the corruption scandal known as Tangentopoli swept away the old political guard that had ruled Italy since the beginning of the Republic, destroying the Christian Democrat party and sending the Socialist leader Bettino Craxi into exile, it left a political vacuum which was filled with amazing alacrity by Berlusconi and his Forza Italia political machine. Since then, FI and the increasingly centrist heirs to Italy’s Communist Party have ruled the “Second Republic”. Sunday’s election marks the end of their era. PD leader Matteo Renzi has resigned.

Italy now seems to face a choice between a right-wing coalition led by Salvini and the Five Star populists. The growth of populism and the right is a general trend in Europe, largely fuelled by two issues, austerity and immigration, both of which have hit Italians particularly hard. Both the parties that have gained most in this election are anti-immigration and Eurosceptic. "I thank (European Commission President Jean-Claude) Juncker for the words he said in the election campaign (against populism),” Salvini said, “because the more he speaks the more votes we get. Let's hope he stays president of the European Commission for the shortest time possible.”

If Europe sees the two most likely outcomes of the Italian election as a choice between the devil and the deep blue sea, it has partly itself to blame. It has done far too little to help Italy deal with the massive influx of migrants across the deep blue Mediterranean, 640,000 in the last four years. Insisting that arrivals are processed in the EU country where they touch land has left frontline countries with an intolerable burden that has fuelled anti-immigrant and anti-EU sentiment. As demonstrated by the fact that although much-liked personally, former foreign minister and European Commissioner Emma Bonino’s +Europa (More Europe) received 2.6%, of the vote, below the entry bar of 3%.

Despite many similarities in their programmes, both Di Maio and Salvini have ruled out joining forces. The Five Star Movement has always vowed it would never ally itself with any of the traditional parties, and is difficult to see where the right would get the extra votes it needs to reach 40%. Despite the clear winners and losers, we are not much nearer knowing what the next Italian government will look like than we were yesterday. One thing we can say, is that it unlikely to look like any we’ve seen before.

http://www.repubblica.it/politica/2018/03/05/news/italian_elections_m5s_wins-190525567/