The Italian Senate votes on scheduling a no-confidence vote against the government, with the opposition less than united on how to deal with the political crisis that started after Matteo Salvini’s Lega withdrew its support to the coalition government.
The vote will take place this evening, with the Minister of Interior, Salvini, calling for a snap election in October. The deputy prime minister argues that the government no longer agrees on key policy issues, including the completion of the TAV Turin-Lyon high-speed rail link.
Lega wants a no-confidence vote to take place as soon as Wednesday, recalling all MPs from recess. To achieve this, Lega would have to sign on the approval of all party whips, which is not likely.
Meanwhile, the centre-left Democratic Party (PD) wants to delay election but seems reluctant to vote with the Five Star Movement (MS5) to pass a budget. The two parties theoretically have the votes not only to postpone elections but also form an alternative government. However, PD leader Nicola Zingaretti made clear on Monday that PD is not willing to form a government with MS5.
PD Senate Leader Andrea Marcucci met with PD leader Nicola Zingaretti on Monday, suggesting that the party would not ask for immediate elections after the government fails. Taking a step further, former prime minister Matteo Renzi openly expressed his disagreement with Zingaretti, calling on PD to vote with MS5 to pass a new budget before Italy goes to the polls. Zingaretti dismissed the proposal, calling it “a gift to the dangerous right that everyone wants to stop.”
Without an alternative government in sight, snap elections become inevitable. However, should the President explore the possibility of forming an alternative government, the timing of the election could be postponed by several weeks.