Commentary. There were no surprises. Fratelli d'Italia stormed the polls, outpaced only by the rate of abstentionism. Turnout was the lowest ever.

The vote that shook Italy, Meloni heads to Chigi Palace

Everything went as expected. The post-fascist right won, the progressive and leftist forces lost, and abstentionism broke all records in the history of the Italian Republic.

The elections held no surprises in the end, despite rumors in recent days about some progressive forces beating their poll numbers.

Among the right-wing parties, Fratelli d’Italia bled the Lega dry, which suffered a collapse and saw Salvini’s leadership put in question. All by itself, FdI, the party of the “tricolor flame,” has double the numbers of its allies.

This is a party that – after being out of the government at all levels since the end of Berlusconism – has surged from 4% to 26%, according to provisional estimates.

Overall, the share of the support for the center-right area remains more or less constant, but shifts its center of gravity to Meloni, the clear winner. So Sergio Mattarella is likely to have to nominate Giorgia Meloni as prime minister.

The progressive and leftist area has worked hard at ensuring its own defeat by presenting itself divided and in disarray, despite the electoral law that is tailor-made for coalitions.

The PD finds itself at around 18%, its all-time low, neck and neck with the M5S, estimated at 16-17%, a result that delivers a clear victory for Conte.

By contrast, the Italian Left-Greens, like +Europa, have gotten only modest support: according to the estimates, just above the 3% threshold. If they had all run together, they would have had a chance to be competitive with the right-wingers. Without even taking into account the good result of Calenda and Renzi.

Abstention, rampant through the entire South, was still the undisputed number one choice for the voters. Despite the fact that 18-year-olds could now vote for the Senate, the percentage of voters, 64 percent, was the lowest ever.

Today we will have a clearer picture of the effects of this earthquake, but the impression is that right-wing voters came to the polls motivated, driven by a desire to put their parties in charge of the country.

The forces in our camp bear a grave and heavy responsibility for not even really trying.

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