The 5 Star Movement, Forza Italia and Liga have refused in the Senate to participate in the vote on the motion of confidence in the Government of Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, which means that they do not support reviving the coalition. The three formations have left the hemicycle to avoid the vote on the continuity of a ‘Draghi bis’ Cabinet. But they have done it for different reasons. The right-wing parties, because they do not want to continue in an Executive with Five Stars. The left-wing populists, because they have already distanced themselves from Draghi by precipitating this political crisis.
Without the presence of these three parties, the Senate proceeded to vote, which ended with 95 votes in favor of Draghi against 38 against. Without sufficient parliamentary support, the Prime Minister has left the Senate and is expected to go to the Quirinale Palace to meet with President Sergio Mattarella and present his resignation.
“It is a black page for Italy. Politics has failed, in an emergency the response has been not knowing how to assume the responsibility of governing. We are playing with the future of Italians. The effects of this tragic election will go down in history,” Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio, leader of Together for the Future and former member of Five Stars, has declared through Twitter.
“I don’t want full powers. You decide.” The Italian Prime Minister, Mario Draghi, made clear hours before this Wednesday before the Senate his conditions to continue leading the Executive and leave behind the political crisis that has torn the country apart through “a new pact of trust” for the Government. It was his attempt to exhaust the legislature, which ends in March 2023.
The country is trying today to overcome the crisis opened last week by the 5 Star Movement, by expressing its disagreement with several points of an important decree law proposed by Draghi. Last Thursday he presented his resignation to the president, Sergio Mattarella, who rejected it outright and summoned him to resolve the differences in parliament to see if he still has the majority support of Congress.
Thus, in Wednesday’s session in the Senate to vote on the motion of confidence, Draghi had urged the parties to decide whether to confirm their support for the national unity coalition with which he headed the Government in February 2021. The Prime Minister He listened during the morning to the arguments of the political groups, to give his reply in the afternoon.
In his long speech, the former president of the European Central Bank showed openness, although setting out his own conditions: a new pact of confidence in the Government on the economic and energy emergency, tax reform, and the purchasing power of families and companies. Draghi appealed to parties in his broad coalition, which includes from the right to the left, about his future in office. “We need a new sincere and concrete trust pact, are you ready?” He asked them. “The only way forward if we want to stay together is to rebuild a (government) pact with courage, selflessness and credibility,” he insisted.
The right-wing of former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, Forza Italia, and the far-right League of populist Matteo Salvini expressed themselves in favor of this “new pact” in support of a government led by Draghi, but irremediably demanded the departure of the anti-system from the 5 Star Movement and form a new Cabinet.
“The center-right parties are in favor of a ‘new pact’ of government and are going to contribute to the solution of the country’s problems, but only with a new Executive, profoundly renewed, also led by Mario Draghi and without the 5-Star Movement. “, they exposed in an official note during the debate.
The ultras of the Brothers of Italy, who, led by Giorgia Meloni, do not participate in the government coalition in question today, had announced their ‘no’ in the vote.
For its part, Five Stars had advanced that it would not give its vote of confidence to Draghi. But Enrico Letta’s Democratic Party, the main centre-left formation, still did not give up and reiterated its full support. It also had the backing of Free and Equal (left), Italia Viva (center) and Together for the Future, the latest split from the 5 Star Movement. But the numbers didn’t work out for Draghi.
“On this day of madness, Parliament decides to go against Italy. We have done everything possible to avoid it and we support the Draghi Government. Italians will show at the polls that they are wiser than their representatives,” Letta wrote on Twitter after the failed vote.
“This is a grotesque and absurd crisis sought by Giuseppe Conte and the Five Star Movement,” said the leader of Italia Viva, Matteo Renzi, during his speech.
The Italian Prime Minister made every effort to convince and listed the internal challenges (among them, economic recovery, combating inflation, and job creation) and external ones (energy independence and the war in Ukraine) to which between Italy and the European Union, which he has said “require a truly strong and united government and a Parliament that supports it with conviction”.
The polls do support the prime minister: the majority of Italians want him to stay in office. This would be, along with the numerous political pressures that he has received in recent days, one of the reasons why he has backed down and did not confirm his resignation. “The support that I have seen in the country, the mobilization these days of citizens, associations, territories in favor of the continuity of the Government is unprecedented and cannot be ignored. It is what has encouraged me to once again propose a pact of coalition and submit it to your vote. You are the ones who decide”, maintained Draghi in his turn to reply.
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