Italian voters have rejected the populist 5-Star Movement in mayoral elections, favoring established center-left and center-right tickets, but its leader vowed Monday to press on until national power is achieved. With a majority of ballots counted from elections a day earlier in some 1,000 small cities and towns, the 5-Star Movement had imploded in all big races, including in Genoa, home of its leader and founder, comic Beppe Grillo. Voters thrashed the anti-euro movement, which bills itself as anti-establishment since supporters’ online selections generally determine their slate of candidates.
Only a year ago, the 5-Stars captured Rome’s high-profile city hall, fueling the populists’ ambitions to govern all of Italy when national elections are held.
That credential might not have helped this time around. Rome Mayor Virginia Raggi’s administration got off to a rocky start, dogged by transportation strikes, garbage pileups and scandals swirling around some of her appointees or aides.