Meloni’s right-wing wins Italian election – exit polls
A right-wing alliance led by Giorgia Meloni’s Fratelli d’Italia party looks set to win a clear majority in the next parliament, exit polls said on Sunday after voting ended in an Italian national election. An exit poll for state broadcaster RAI said the bloc of conservative parties, that also includes Matteo Salvini’s La Lega and Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia, won between 41 and 45%, enough to guarantee control of both houses of parliament. Italy’s electoral law favours groups that manage to create pre-ballot pacts, giving them an outsized number of seats by comparison with their vote tally. According data released by the Home Affairs Ministry, prtsently the voting projections put the centre-right ahead with 44.3%, while the centre-left plays the part of the great loser with 26.7%. Movimento Cinque Stelle is at 14.8%, Action and Italia Viva at 7.9%. Italexit at 1.7%. Among the individual parties Fratelli d’Italia 26%, Lega 8.6%, Forza Italia 8%, Partito Democratico 19.1%. The centre-right would have between 109 and 129 senators, the centre-left between 31 and 51, M5s between 18 and 28, Action between 8 and 10 senators.The turnout amounted to 63.91%, about nine percentage points less than the 2018 general election (72.9%).
Full results are expected later today. If confirmed, the result would cap a remarkable rise for Meloni, whose party won only four per cent of the vote in the last national election in 2018, but this time around was forecast to emerge as Italy’s largest group on 22.5-26.5%. As leader of the biggest party in the winning alliance, she is the obvious choice to become Italy’s first woman prime minister, but the transfer of power is traditionally slow and it could take several weeks before the new government is sworn in.
In an off-the-cuff comment, early this monring, Meloni said, “From the first projections we can say that Italians there is a clear indication for a centre-right government led by the Brothers of Italy.” She said she would be postponing “all the more profound and complete assessments” until later today given that the data were still not definitive.
FdI group leader in the Chamber, Francesco Lollobrigida says, “We wanted to go to the government with the possibility of governing and with what emerges from the first data, the Italians gave us this possibility. Giorgia Meloni proved to be courageous, loyal and serious in leading a constructive and patriotic opposition, and I believe that the government will be the line that we will continue to affirm.”
Meloni on a quest for Italy’s ‘ring of power’
Giorgia Meloni has made no secret of her passion for fantasy author J.R.R. Tolkien, whose classic The Lord of the Rings has long been a favourite of Italy’s post-fascist right – despite the British author’s distaste for extremist politics. When Meloni was first elected to cabinet in 2008, becoming Italy’s youngest-ever minister at 31, she vowed she would not be corrupted by the “ring of power” – a reference to the ultimate prize at the heart of J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic. Later that year, she posed for a magazine profile next to a statue of Gandalf, the bearded wizard who roamed Tolkien’s fictional Middle Earth. Fourteen years on, true to form, she wrapped up her campaign with a nod to another Tolkien hero, Aragorn, whose fiery battle speech she referenced at her final campaign rally in Rome. Meloni, 45, has made clear she regards the legends of the rings of power as a lot more than fantasy works: they inspire her worldview and politics. “I think that Tolkien could say better than we can what conservatives believe in,” she told The New York Times, which investigated her lifelong fascination with Tolkien’s world in an article published this week.
Meloni’s victory on international sites
With a breaking news on its website and on Twitter, the BBC wass the first international media organisation to report, just after 11pm, the exit polls in Italy: “Giorgia Meloni of the extreme right is preparing to win the elections and is in about to become the first female premier.”
“Giorgia Meloni’s post-fascist party in the lead”, is the bulletin of the France Presse agency.According to the Financial Times, “Italy risks” but, writes the newspaper, “it is not a leap into extremism.” Among the international media there are those who focus on the the leader, who on her party – defined as right-wing, extreme right, radical or post-fascist according to the traditional orientations of the newspapers – who instead speaks in general of the right-wing coalition waiting to see more concrete results, who still evokes the possible “government more to the right since the time of Mussolini”.
The Spanish El Pais reports that “the first polls of the Italian elections indicate a clear victory of the ultra-right party Fratelli d’Italia, of the Roman Giorgia Meloni, with a range between 22 and 26% of votes”, while the conservative newspaper El Mundo headlines: “The right wins the elections in Italy”. The French Le Figaro opens the site with a photo of Meloni at the polls and the title “The union of the right largely in the lead”. Ample space for elections and exit polls also on the all-news Bfm-tv, while the site of the other major radio and television news broadcaster France Info opens with “Giorgia Meloni’s far-right party in the lead, her coalition would collect over 40 % of votes”.
The Guardian: “the exit polls show the victory of the far right”, and internally speaks of a “clear victory of the right-wing coalition”. The German media report the victory of the “radical right” in Italy. This is the case of both Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (Faz), the moderates’ newspaper, and the Spiegel, a progressive political magazine. “For the first time since the World War II, the country will again, in all probability, have a national right-wing government. A historic result, Meloni becomes the first female president of the Italian Parliament”, writes Bild, according to which in Brussels and in the European capitals there is widespread concern about a government led by Meloni’s Fratelli d’Italia, the successor of a party founded by the fascists. Meloni is criticised by her political opponents for not having never fully distanced himself from fascism. But she condemned war, racial laws and dictatorship.”
On the other side of the Atlantic, the New York Times writes that “with the results of the vote in Italy, Europe is preparing for another shift to the right”. “Opinion polls suggest that Italy’s next prime minister could be Giorgia Meloni, a far-right leader with post-fascist roots. She would be the country’s first female prime minister”, emphasizes the prestigious American newspaper. “Italy has elected the right-wing coalition led by Giorgia Meloni” writes the Wall Street Journal, stressing that the vote was the result of the “consequences of Europe’s economic war against Russia”. While the breaking news of the CNN underlines that “Giorgia Meloni will become the first Italian premier of the extreme right since the time of Mussolini”. Also for the Washington Post “Italy seems to be heading towards a revolutionary outcome that would give the country its first female prime minister and the right-most government since the fall of Mussolini”. From South America, the site of the Folha de San Paolo, an important newspaper of the Brazilian city, opens with “The right wins in Italy and opens the way for Giorgia Meloni”, while the portal of the Clarin, the main Argentine newspaper, headlines: “Elections in Italy: who is Giorgia Meloni, the far-right representative who will be the first woman to become prime minister”.
‘Significant challenges for the new Italian government’ – Moody’s
“The next Italian government will have to face a number of significant credit challenges, firstly implementing the PNRR (the Italian Recovery and Resilience Plan), managing issues related to energy supply and energy prices, as well as managing the burden of debt which is vulnerable to negative growth, financing costs and inflation developments.” Thus was the comment of the rating agency Moody’s on what awaits the new government in Italy, after the first exit polls on Sunday’s vote.
‘Congratulations Meloni!’ – Polish premier
“Congratulations Giorgia Meloni!” tweeedt Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki after the exit polls of the Italian elections. Meloni and Morawiecki at Eurocamera are both part of the the European Conservatives and Reformists Group, a centre-right political group in the European Parliament.
‘Meloni shows the way to a free Europe’ – Vox
“Tonight millions of Europeans put their hopes on Italy. Giorgia Meloni has shown the way to a proud, free Europe of sovereign nations, capable of cooperating for the safety and prosperity of all”, wrote Santiago Abascal on Twitter, leader of the Spanish Vox party.
Le Pen’s party rejoices
Jordan Bardella, MEP of the National Ressemblement and candidate for president of Marine Le Pen’s party, writes in a tweet: “The Italians gave a lesson in humility to the European Union which, through the voice of Mrs. Von Der Leyen, claimed to impose the vote. No threat of any kind can stop democracy: the peoples of Europe raise their heads and take their destiny in their hands!”.