The Italian government called on Tuesday for confidence votes in the lower house of parliament to try to force through an electoral law that is likely to penalize the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement. The new voting law, which would be used in a national election due by next May, is backed by the ruling Democratic Party (PD), former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia (Go Italy!) and the anti-migrant Northern League. Unlike the current rules, the new system, known as the Rosatellum, would allow the formation of broad coalitions before the ballot, a factor likely to hurt the maverick 5-Star, which refuses to join alliances. The party, which tops many opinion polls, says the Rosatellum could cost it up to 50 seats in parliament. It has called for protests on Wednesday, when the lower house is due to hold two confidence motions. A third vote is set for Thursday.
“This is a mortal blow to democracy, a violation of democratic laws,” said Luigi Di Maio, the 5-Star’s candidate for prime minister. “The aim is to destroy us.”
Italy’s political landscape is highly fragmented and successive governments have failed to reduce the nation’s huge debt mountain and struggled to revive the economy. Investors fear political instability here could undermine the euro.
Full Article: Italy calls confidence vote on contested electoral law.