Italy moves toward the Draghi government

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Mario Draghi has accepted with reserve the task entrusted to him by the Head of State Sergio Mattarella to form a new government after the implosion of the Conte 2 Cabinet. Mattarella’s intervention was indeed decisive in breaking the impasse in the former ruling coalition. If in the previous days the M5S-PD partners had proved fatally unable to put together the pieces of a coalition that had collapsed under the weight of their own inconsistencies, the real risk not to run was that of exposing the country to a prolonged phase marked by absence of leadership.

Draghi will return to the Quirinale Palace after having concluded consultations with Lega and M5S on Saturday morning. In front of the celebrated former president of the ECB (2011-19) and governor of the Bank of Italy (2005-11), there is an historical opportunity. To close a very long season marked by repeated political failures – Italy has been a country in decline for decades without any of its executives ever been able to reverse the trend – as well as to lay the foundations for the national recovery after the pandemic shock, by drawing on European funds.

All this helps to better understand the sense of messianic expectation that has spread in our country around the figure of Draghi and his supposed thaumaturgical abilities to save Italy from itself. It will be a titanic undertaking, nor is there the certainty of really being on the eve of a new season for the social and political life of Italy. What is certain is that a Draghi government can really represent a redemption opportunity for the many actors of Italian politics.

In the center-right, the first to react positively was Forza Italia, which communicated its willingness to support the prime minister in charge at the cost of breaking the front with the allies of the Lega and Fratelli d’Italia. In fact, the political cost of a possible refusal on the part of those who have always defined themselves as pro-European and moderate party would be too high. Not to mention the possibility of recovering a share of the lost centrality after a long season spent in the shadow of the allies.

Different situation for the League, which has the opportunity to shake off the label of sovereign and anti-EU force by openly supporting an executive destined to revive Italy’s international standing and credibility. Salvini would also have the opportunity to deepen the roots of his party within the moderate area of the country, conveying the interests of those decisive productive classes that remained largely on the sidelines of the political action of the Conte 2 Cabinet.

Especially when the ally-rival of the Brothers of Italy seems to have no doubts about the fact that it does not want to take part in the coalition being discussed. Meloni was recently elected president of the Party of European Conservatives and Reformists, a result that confirms her accreditation in the family of the right-wing Eurosceptic government and clarifies the difficulties and implications connected with her eventual support for Draghi.

If there have never been doubts about the pro-Draghi choice of Renzi (once again, king maker of the executive) and the Democratic Party (impossible to say no to Mattarella), the news of the last few hours is the reality bath that also pushes the populist M5S to support the prime minister in charge, putting aside romantic and wild speculations such as the possibility of getting a third administration led by Conte. The comedian-founder Grillo’s descent to Rome to participate in tomorrow morning’s consultation is emblematic.

Also in Italy, therefore, the contours of what could be the new “Ursula majority” are outlined, along the lines of the pattern that led to the election of the current president of the EU Commission in Brussels: the previous M5S-PD majority plus Forza Italia party, with the possible addition of Salvini’s League. Not bad for the Legislature that after the 2018 vote should have sanctioned the affirmation of an Italian populist bipolarism.