After six days of intense debate, which led to cross-party negotiations failing and seven votes to go, the more than a thousand voters decided that Sergio Mattarella was the figure to carry on as the nation’s president. for a new term.
Mattarella’s election took place in the eighth ballot, held on the afternoon of January 29, in which the 80-year-old head of state exceeded the 505-vote threshold for an absolute majority during the partial count.
At the end of the process, which was attended by 630 deputies, 321 senators and 58 regional delegates, Mattarella received the support of 759 electors to remain in the Quirinal Palace for another seven years.
Mattarella is the second most voted president after Sandro Pertini who in 1978 received 832 votes out of a possible 995 and the second to repeat himself after Giorgio Napolitano in 2013.
Behind Mattarella was Carlo Nordio with 90 votes, while current Prime Minister and aspiring President Mario Draghi only got five votes.
Precisely Draghi was one of the first to speak after learning that Mattarella had passed the threshold of 505 votes. “I am grateful to the president for his decision to accept the extremely strong will of parliament to re-elect him for a second term.”
Changes of plans for Mattarella
The eighth election represents a sea change in plans for the current head of state as he had repeatedly expressed his desire to leave the Quirinal Palace, which the Reuters news agency supports with the argument that the President had signed a contract to rent a new apartment.
But, as the AP news agency had pointed out, Mattarella had shown himself willing, in his entourage, to accept a second mandate in order to avoid a vacancy of power, the divided Italian parties having not been able to choose a other personality.
“I had other plans, but I respect parliament,” the president said, confirming his yes after learning his name had received majority support.
According to Reuters, before the vote, various polls indicated that the majority of Italians wanted him to stay in power, as did a number of parliamentarians.
Mattarella, was elected president of the country in 2015, before that he was a former constitutional judge and centrist lawmaker.
Reputedly introverted and austere, as well as little known to most Italians, he won over his compatriots with his calm and easy way of managing the country’s repeated political crises and of managing the Covid-19 health emergency.
In Italy, within its political system, the figure of the president can appoint prime ministers and is often called upon to resolve political crises.
How is Italy after Mattarella’s re-election?
According to the main Italian news agencies and media, the election of Mattarella showed the failure of political parties to dialogue and find points of convergence.
In fact, the publication ‘Corriere Della Sera’ warns that Mattarella’s re-election, hailed by all political forces except the Brotherhood of Italy, comes at a time when center-right and center-left coalitions have bursts.
“This is the second time, in just under a year, that the parties have failed to resolve fundamental issues for the country; the first to give the government after the Conte crisis, the second to elect the President of the Republic,” said Luciano Fontana in his editorial.
On the other hand, although Italy maintains its two main political figures in their positions (Mattarella as President and Mario Draghi as Prime Minister), many fear that the division that has occurred in Parliament will lead to problems for Draghi’s tenure.
“The general political context has become less favorable for the Draghi government, which faces an arduous task in the year remaining before the next general elections,” said Wolfango Piccoli of political risk consultancy Teneo.
With EFE, Reuters and Italian media