Daily Management Review

Italy cannot get out of the political dead end


The way out of the political dead end in Italy has not yet been found.

Beppe Grillo, the founder of the Five Star Movement. Photo by Niccolò Caranti
Beppe Grillo, the founder of the Five Star Movement. Photo by Niccolò Caranti
All parties have high ambitions and an equally high level of disagreement in order to be able to manage this uncontrolled country.

After the general elections that took place in early March in the country, there is no clear leader who has won the majority of votes. Similarly, there is no obvious structure of the coalition: the largest party, the Five-Star Movement, originally excluded the possibility of joining the government with any other party.

A few weeks after the vote, the Five-Star Movement softened its position, and now it will almost certainly become part of any government. However, it is not yet clear which party (or parties) will join it in the parliament of the Eurozone’s third largest economy.

Three major parties can join the Five Star Movement party and its 31-year-old leader Luigi Di Maio in the government. However, this can cause a number of problems for each of them. The party intentionally runs counter to both wings of the political spectrum, which complicates ideological ties with the traditionally left and right parties of Italy.

The most obvious decision for the Five-Star Movement is to unite with the League of the North party, the extreme right-wing anti-establishment party, like the Five-Star Movement, although it takes a much more extreme position on issues such as immigration.

The problem with this possible alliance is that before the elections, the League of the North led by Matteo Salvini concluded an agreement with Forza Italia, the party of Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi. Di Maio and his party reckon that Berlusconi is the antithesis of everything they are fighting for, believing that he is part of the corrupt Italian establishment, and refuse to participate in the government with his party.

Salvini and his party promised to remain allies of Berlusconi, although there were reports that he would want to support the former eighty-year-old former prime minister. Salvini denied this information.

As a result, there remains one realistic option for the Five Stars Movement - to come out together with the Democratic Party. Earlier, the Democratic Party completely excluded this, and its leader Maurizio Martina said that the party intends to give resolute resistance to any future government.

Some members of the leadership of the Democratic Party have since changed their point of view, and Martina is now interested in negotiations with the Five-Star Movement. Nevertheless, there remain problems with the chairman of the Democratic Party, Matteo Orfini, who opposes any government with the party according to the Bloomberg report.

The Democratic Party and the Five-Star Movement intend to begin negotiations next week, according to numerous media reports. However, a split within Democrats can cause serious problems for any negotiations.

source: reuters.com