Chaotic presidential election in Italy
As expected, none of the candidates in the election for Italy's president achieved the required two-thirds majority on Monday. The main parliamentary groups called on their electoral staff to abstain because they could not agree on a candidate. In the fourth round of voting, which is to take place on Thursday, an absolute majority will suffice, and Prime Minister Mario Draghi is considered the favourite.
A surreal situation
Corriere della Sera finds the entire situation surreal:
“A country with the third largest national debt in the world, 200 billion in new European loans of which 122 billion have not yet been repaid, 350 Covid deaths a day and a recovery that has not yet consolidated cannot afford the luxury of a surreal Monday like yesterday. It seemed as if the thousand-plus electoral college, including the party leaders, only realised at the last moment that there was a president of the republic to be elected for the next seven years. It's unbelievable that the party leaders have not yet come together, even though they are all [except Fratelli d'Italia leader Giorgia Meloni] part of the current government majority.”
A vacuum must be avoided
The problem is that a new government would have to be formed immediately if Draghi were elected president, La Stampa interjects:
“And this is the second issue that should have been raised yesterday, when for the first time Draghi was willing to talk about it with Salvini and the other party leaders of the government camp. However, he is not ready to go into the details of the composition of the executive, neither as outgoing prime minister nor as incoming head of state. Addressing the crisis with the solution in his pocket and avoiding a vacuum that the country cannot afford given the current health crisis and the international situation, which is becoming more complicated by the hour because of Ukraine, would certainly be necessary now.”