Flooding, bills and appointments: the government’s all-in

With appointments and billions, the government has passed the test of a delicate week, one of those that have imprinted a decisive characterization on the majority’s political direction and that will certainly be remembered, for better or worse, in the political debate and propaganda of the coming months. In the meantime, the most complex test was the management of the first major and dramatic climate emergency since the beginning of the mandate: the damage caused by the floods in Emilia-Romagna and Marche Regions. Perhaps also thanks to the lesson of Cutro, with the necessary distinctions, this time Meloni did not make a wrong move, from communication to legislative reply to propaganda. The result was a lightning decree approved by the Council of Ministers last Tuesday that allocated a 2 billion euro mini-measure. A package of provisions that for its scope and speed earned even the applause of Stefano Bonaccini himself, governor of Emilia-Romagna and Schlein’s antagonist in the PD.

This decree was followed a few days later by the conversion into law with confidence in the Senate of the “Bills” Decree. As much as 4.8 billion, of which 3.57 billion will be used to tackle the high energy prices in the second half of the year. With the green light at second reading, the Senate thus confirmed the text as amended by the Chamber of Deputies, which introduces measures to support families and businesses in the purchase of electricity and gas, as well as health and tax measures.

The government consensus seems to be travelling with the wind in its sails. But the real test of strength has been on the appointments front: RAI and the chairmanship of the Anti-Mafia Committee. In both cases the Melonian establishment has been coherent despite the contrasts. The Rai board confirmed the appointment of Roberto Sergio as CEO. As for the rest, everything is as expected: Gian Marco Chiocci, sponsored by the Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, is leaving the AdnKronos news agency and will be the new director of Tg1; Antonio Preziosi, the journalist strongly desired by Forza Italia, will head Tg2. Mario Orfeo instead remains at Tg3. In short, rumours have been confirmed, although there has been an evident split in the board of directors. On the other hand, Chiara Colosimo has been elected chairman of the Anti-Mafia Committee, a decisive and determined reply to the controversy raised by the left because of the photo taken in 2010-2013 showing Colosimo next to the former terrorist Luigi Ciavardini, who was then detained in Rebibbia and has now been rehabilitated following his long sentence and has become a member of an association that works to protect prisoners.

A firm and united line that of the majority, not at all weakened by criticism. This is the image that the government is also building abroad.

This week also saw the signing of the agreement between Ita Airways and Lufthansa for the Germans to take 40% ownership of the Italian national airline. This is a historic agreement, which will contribute to the further development of a company like Ita, whose numbers already demonstrated a real state of health. In fact, it is a pact that will project Ita to become one of Europe’s leading airline fleets, with the Rome hub of Fiumicino becoming a fundamental intercontinental centre. For this reason, Economy Minister Giancarlo Giorgetti has also exulted: after all, the Ministry of Economic Affairs-Ita tandem was instrumental in concluding the €320 million deal. For now, because after 2025 another 450 million should arrive for almost complete control, leaving the Ministry of the Economy with a 10% share.

And who knows whether these events will weigh on the outcome of the ballots on 28 and 29 May following the first round, which ended 4-2 for the centre-right. This is unlikely to be the case, because administrative elections are very much disconnected from national political dynamics. However, there are seven cities up for grabs. The centre-left hopes to catch up, while the centre-right trusts that the results will hold.