The President of Italy, Sergio Mattarella, dissolved Parliament this Thursday (21), which automatically implies early elections, which will be held on September 25.
“The political situation led to this decision,” Mattarela declared before television cameras, referring to the end of the national unity coalition that supported the government led by economist Mario Draghi.
“I sanctioned the decree dissolving the Chambers, with the aim of calling new elections within a maximum period of 70 days”, said Mattarella, noting that this decision is always “the last option”.
Mattarella thanked Draghi and his ministers for the work carried out during “these 18 months” of government. He also recalled that the economic situation, as well as the cost of energy and food, “does not allow for many breaks” and warned that there are still many measures to be taken.
Considered the savior of the euro zone in 2012, Mario Draghi was appointed Prime Minister of Italy in February 2021 to rescue Italy from the health, political and economic emergency it was going through. He threw in the towel on Thursday, exhausted by disputes within his coalition.
The political crisis had been brewing for months in Rome, against the backdrop of the internal struggles of the anti-system 5 Star Movement (M5E). Finally, the heterogeneous coalition that supported it and that went from right to left collapsed.
The end of the Executive led by Draghi could benefit, above all, the right-wing coalition led by the post-fascist Fratelli d’Italia (Brothers of Italy) party, led by Giorgia Meloni. Polls indicate his comfortable victory in the elections.
This morning, much applauded in the Chamber of Deputies, Draghi immediately requested the suspension of the session to travel to the Quirinal presidential palace, where he arrived shortly after 9:15 am local time (04:15 am in Brasília) to communicate his “decision” to President Sergio Mattarella. .
The dissolution of Parliament was the expected conclusion after Forza Italia, Silvio Berlusconi’s right-wing party, Matteo Salvini’s far-right League, and the anti-establishment 5 Star Movement (M5E) party refused to participate in a vote. of confidence requested on Wednesday by the prime minister in the Senate.
The fall of the “Super Mario”, designated to save Italy in February 2021 at a time of social, economic and health crisis, generated strong reactions across the peninsula.
“Italy betrayed” was the headline of the newspaper La Repubblica, while La Stampa, a newspaper close to the industrialists, limited itself to writing “Shame” on the entire page.
According to polls, a majority of Italians wanted Draghi to remain in office, one of the reasons he stepped back on Wednesday and did not confirm his first resignation. However, he failed to get the parties in his coalition to align around a government “pact” he proposed in a long, dense speech to the Senate.
The right-wing parties that were part of the Executive hope to win the elections and have decided to overthrow the prime minister under the pretext of not wanting to govern together with the 5 Star Movement.
In turn, the anti-systems, which started the crisis last week, consider that several points of the laws proposed by Draghi are contrary to his principles and that all the measures taken during his previous government were dismantled.
The end of the unity executive could, above all, benefit the right-wing coalition led by the post-fascist Fratelli d’Italia (Brothers of Italy) party, led by Giorgia Meloni, which according to polls would comfortably win the early elections.
“We are ready. This nation desperately needs to regain its conscience, its pride and its freedom,” tweeted Giorgia Meloni, 45, a veteran far-right leader who could become Italy’s future head of government on Thursday.
This prospect worries Europeans, as their party, the Brothers of Italy, with 24% of voting intentions, advocates a revision of the European Union treaties and even their replacement by a “confederation of sovereign states”.
The European Economy Commissioner, Paolo Gentiloni, called the defection of the coalition parties “irresponsible”, while Brussels and its European partners pressed for Draghi to remain in office.
The markets are carefully watching the situation. Italy’s cost of debt rose again and the Milan Stock Exchange closed down 1.6% on Wednesday, a sign of jitters over uncertainty in the euro zone’s third-largest economy.