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Thursday, June 30, 2022

Italy. Presidential elections. A stalemate in parliament – the media and politicians comment

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The Italian parliament made its sixth attempt to elect the country’s president on Friday. The vote, however, has still not been settled. We are waiting for the leaders of the largest groups to conclude an agreement on the candidate. Former Prime Minister and now Senator Matteo Renzi said that the presidential election was “confused with X-Factor auditions”. The next approaches are scheduled for Saturday.

President election Italian are performed by deputies, senators and delegates from all regions of the country. In total, it is over a thousand people. A simple majority of 505 votes is required to be elected.

The Reuters agency stressed that the stakes are high because the president of Italy, who is elected for a seven-year term, has significant power to deal with political crises that regularly hit the state. He may, inter alia, appoint prime ministers and dissolve parliament.


Sixth vote without result

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In the sixth evening vote, 444 abstained from nearly a thousand electors and over 100 blank cards were thrown in. 336 votes were cast for the outgoing president, Sergio Mattarella – the most votes so far. However, he did not declare his readiness to remain in the position.

In the previous vote, in the morning, the center-right electors backed Senate President Maria Elisabetta Alberti Casellati, but she did not receive the required majority. The center-left abstained from voting in protest against her candidacy.

During the evening vote, which was immediately billed as a fiasco, there was a political meeting of the leaders of the League – Matteo Salvini, the Democratic Party – Enrico Letta and the Five Star Movement – Giuseppe Conte. Salvini has stated that he is making efforts to have the woman selected, but has not disclosed the name. Conte admitted that the choice of a woman was possible.

The next votes will take place on Saturday.

Voting for president in the Italian parliamentPAP / EPA / FABIO FRUSTACI

Italy – presidential candidates

One of the candidates for the presidency of Italy is present Prime Minister Mario Draghithough his chances have diminished this week. Many MPs are rejecting his candidacy, partly because they fear that resignation from the incumbent head of government could lead to an early election.

Matteo Salivini votes in the presidential electionPAP / EPA / ROBERTO MONALDO

Meanwhile, the Reuters agency pointed out, the chances that the 80-year-old will remain the president for the next term are increasing. Sergio Mattarellaalthough he himself has so far ruled out such a possibility. In Thursday’s vote, it was he who received the most – 166 – votes of all the candidates.

In addition to Draghi and Matterella, many other names are mentioned as candidates for office, sometimes only to be rejected by one of the sides of the political dispute after a few hours. Among them are an experienced diplomat Elisabetta Belloni86-year-old former judge of the Constitutional Court Sabino Casseseformer chairman of the Chamber of Deputies Pier Ferdinando Casiniformer head of government Giuliano Amatopresident of the Senate Maria Elisabetta by Alberta Casellati or the Minister of Justice of Italy Marta Cartabia.

Presidential election of Italy. No agreement between right and left

There is a stalemate in the election of the president due to a disagreement between the center-right blocs led by Matteo Salvini’s League and the center-left, where the Democratic Party is the main force. Both these formations form a broad coalition government, but are unable to agree on a common presidential candidate. The Italian press emphasizes before Friday’s vote that “everyone is against everyone” and it is not known whether a breakthrough will take place after the morning conference. In the opinion of some commentators, the elections resemble a conclave.

The comments highlight the growing climate of uncertainty and chaos, and the nervous atmosphere of discussions in individual groups. Another conflict in recent days was caused by the candidacy of the former head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Silvio Berlusconi’s government, former EU commissioner Franco Frattini, presented by Salvini. This idea was categorically rejected by the center-left. She warned that if the center-right votes for their candidates, “everything would fall apart”.

Maria Elisabetta Alberti Casellati, President of the Senate, and Roberto Fico, President of the Chamber of DeputiesPAP / EPA / ROBERTO MONALDO

What is happening “shows one thing: the president should be directly elected by the citizens,” former prime minister Matteo Renzi wrote on Twitter. The electors, in his opinion, “ridicule the most sublime event of parliamentary democracy.” In his opinion, the election was confused with “X-Factor auditions”.

The daily “La Repubblica” draws attention to the fact that a “crossfire of votes” has arisen, and with it fears that early parliamentary elections may take place. “Fix it quickly, the country has other problems” – appealed to politicians from the Bologna daily “Il Resto del Carlino”.

Main photo source: PAP / EPA / FABIO FRUSTACI

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