Commentary. Of the 5 million citizens called to the ballots in Rome, about half voted. Out of 145 candidates in this round, only 25 were women.

Italy’s municipal elections saw low turnout and few women on the ballot

A year after the regional elections held in the full pandemic, when the map, from Piedmont to Sicily, was dominated by the center-right, the orientation seen in the municipalities this time showed the center-left as victors, with a result in many ways surprising. On Monday, the secretary of the PD had a good point when he emphasized that “our voters are ahead of us,” because the PD and M5S votes “mixed together,” in Rome as in Turin.

The leadership of Letta and Conte came out strengthened, both within their respective parties and externally, in the eyes of those who can’t stomach the yellow-red alliance, from Renzi to Calenda. Of course, when the turn comes for the political elections (and even before that, in the vote for the President of the Republic) the game played will be a different one, and nothing allows for any triumphalist conclusions.

Let’s enjoy for now the heavy 5-0 defeat suffered by the right wing in the main cities. The comeback did not succeed in Trieste, but that is worth a separate discussion. It’s certainly a great relief to have averted the prospect of seeing Meloni’s favorite, the radio host Enrico Michetti, as mayor of Rome. But we must also realize that this is half a victory, for the simple reason that the new Rome mayor, Roberto Gualtieri, got the lowest percentage in the history of the last decades.

Of the 5 million citizens called to the ballots in Rome, about half voted, while only one of four voted for the new mayor, with a collapse of representation that offers a snapshot of the current state of a bloodless democracy. All the more so since the social peripheries stayed away from the polls, aggravating the record abstention of the first round and confirming the deep crisis of the parties, whose identities have been emptied by the Draghi government of national unity.

Finally, the bitter icing on the cake: out of 145 candidates in this round, only 25 were women, and none were in the field for the most important cities; none of them were from the PD. The local leaders of our “country of a hundred cities” look more like an old army regiment than anything.

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