Italian President Mattarella dissolves Parliament, prompting early elections

Italian President Mattarella dissolves Parliament, prompting early elections

Prime Minister Mario Draghi submitted his resignation to the Italian president on Thursday morning, the day after the implosion of his national unity coalition in Parliament.

Italian President Sergio Mattarella signs a document as he meets with President of the Council Mario Draghi in Rome [Reuters]
Italian President Sergio Mattarella on Thursday announced the dissolution of the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies, prompting snap elections to be held on September 25 in the eurozone’s third-largest economy. “The political situation led to this decision,” the president said in a televised address, referring to the resignation of Prime Minister Mario Draghi after the defection on Thursday of three major parties from his coalition in a vote.

“The discussion, the vote and the manner in which this vote was expressed yesterday in the Senate” demonstrated the absence of “parliamentary support for the government and the absence of prospects for giving birth to a new majority”, he said. he explains. “This condition made the early dissolution of parliament inevitable,” which “is always the last option,” he added. The Italian media put forward several possible dates for these elections: September 18 and 25, or October 2. Until further notice, the resigning government led by Mario Draghi remains in place to deal with current affairs.
Defeat of “Super Mario”

The arch-favorite in the upcoming election is the so-called “center-right” coalition, which brings together Forza Italia, the right-wing party of Silvio Berlusconi, and the far right represented by the League of populist anti-migrant tribune Matteo Salvini and Fratelli from Italy. Fratelli d’Italia, a post-fascist party chaired by Giorgia Meloni, is given the lead in voting intentions, with nearly 24%, ahead of the Democratic Party (22%) and the League (14%), according to a poll by the SWG institute realized on July 18th. Forza Italia would collect 7.4% of the vote and the 5 Star Movement (M5S) 11.2%.

Arrived at the head of the executive in February 2021 to get Italy out of the health and economic crisis, Mario Draghi, 74, had presented his resignation for the first time on July 14 to President Mattarella, who had immediately refused it. The refusal of Silvio Berlusconi’s right-wing party, Forza Italia, of the League, Matteo Salvini’s far-right formation, and of the populist formation Mouvement 5 Etoiles (M5S) to participate in a vote of confidence called for on Wednesday by the leader of the government in the Senate, however, got the better of “Super Mario”.

The internal (economic recovery, inflation, employment) and external (energy independence, war in Ukraine) challenges facing Italy and the EU “require a truly strong and united government and a Parliament that accompanies it with conviction”, had however pleaded the resigning Prime Minister. But his appeal was ignored by the heavyweights of his coalition, already with their eyes glued to the upcoming election campaign. In the end, only the center and the left embodied by the Democratic Party (PD) remained at his side until the end.

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