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Mon Feb 11, 2013, 11:47 AM

Voting in the Italian Elections (Help!)

This is my first time voting in the Italian elections and I was hoping against hope that there are a few DUers with some knowledge and insight into Italy's politics and parties. I'm currently doing research now but this isn't as easy as seeing a 'D' and putting a check next to it!

For those interested and wanting to throw in their .02:

http://www.italymag.co.uk/italy-featured/guide/italian-general-election-2013-guide

Mods if this is in the incorrect place please move it and sorry!

12 replies, 1644 views

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Reply Voting in the Italian Elections (Help!) (Original post)
Veruca Salt Feb 2013 OP
JustAnotherGen Feb 2013 #1
Veruca Salt Feb 2013 #2
JustAnotherGen Feb 2013 #3
Veruca Salt Feb 2013 #5
JustAnotherGen Feb 2013 #8
Veruca Salt Feb 2013 #11
Drahthaardogs Feb 2013 #4
Veruca Salt Feb 2013 #6
JustAnotherGen Feb 2013 #7
brooklynite Feb 2013 #9
Veruca Salt Feb 2013 #10
JustAnotherGen Feb 2013 #12

Response to Veruca Salt (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 12:18 PM

1. What did you need to know?

My husband is an Italian citizen (we live in US), and votes from abroad in every election. I've got at least two years (American) before I can get my citizenship there.

Maybe I can ask him? He's very in tune but tends towards radical ideas - example - he voted a big old fat YES on making the Catholic Church have to pay prop taxes . . . but he also own's several revenue earning flats and we own a building together in Calabria. So we had some skin in that game.


I'm at work now - but I can share your post with him tonight.

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Response to JustAnotherGen (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 12:52 PM

2. That would be fantastic!

I also am currently in the US and just had my citizenship recognised back in 2011. I'd like to vote for a party that's in line with my own politics and not accidentally vote against myself!

Perhaps my biggest concern is LGBT rights followed closely by social safety nets and preserving national healthcare. I like how your husband thinks as well, I'd vote yes to make the church pay property taxes!

Anything your husband would like to impart concerning Italian politics would be wonderful! Thank you so much for the offer!

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Response to Veruca Salt (Reply #2)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:51 PM

3. That's tough

Okay - yes it is a historic number of openly gay Italian citizens most likely to gain a seat in the new government at the 'Federal' level - but even that old opportunist Berlusconi only backtracked to get a vote. *Note my husband voted for him the first time.


The rest of his bullet points:

GLBT community does not have the kind of power and influence and visibility in Italy as they do in the US. Most politicians who say they will support gay rights (to include marriage) he has no doubt will renege on that statement as soon as their party takes over the government.

To get the social safety net - you have to start getting from the center to radical right. Think isolationists and people who don't believe in the EU.

But when you get there you can find yourself aligned with racists.

So pick ONE thing you can care about the most and vote your conscience. Don't worry about winning. There's always a protest or riot to correct things.


(My husband is very well spoken in English but does not write it well - he reads here but does not participate often).

ETA - Forgot something: It's not like the US with really only two parties. It's anyone's 'game'. So it's more interesting.

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Response to JustAnotherGen (Reply #3)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 07:42 PM

5. 'There's always a protest or riot....'

Love it!

I've quickly come to find that there doesn't seem to be any sort of 'platform' I can read and all the parties really are a mixed basket.

I'll definitely take his advice and pick one thing to vote on.

I'm also quite surprised that the radical right are the ones for social safety programs! I've got a lot to learn!

If he thinks of anything else I'm all ears!

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Response to Veruca Salt (Reply #5)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 02:24 PM

8. Kind of like this

(Remember - my joint checking account pays taxes there now - so I have a vested interest) -

EU has pressured PIGS to go into austerity. Right? But how much more can they cut? And I'm of the mindset that when the economy gets down - start building. Literally. So if you feel like outside forces are taking over your independence - then you have these folks that say - No more EU! No Austerity! . . . oh and no immigrants (muslims, africans, asians, EASTERN europeans) either

You really have to say - this is REALLY REALLY important to me and I'm going from there. . .


Our thing is social services/education/children/elderly/PUBLIC works. My husband will make any deal with the devil to get the economy going again there. We placed an ad for a General Maintenance Couple to live onsite and his brother counted more than 200 apps in our post box there. It's that bad in parts of Italy right now.

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Response to JustAnotherGen (Reply #8)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 11:05 PM

11. Thank you so much for the help!

I went with lgbt rights since it's near and dear to me. I think I got off easy too since there was only one party that is truly for actual equality and it made it easy to start from.

I would have absolutely picked social services, education and public works next. From my research I would think that Con Monti per l'Italia might be the best choice? Let me know if I'm right or wrong!

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Response to Veruca Salt (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 06:26 PM

4. One thing you need to know is that, NO ONE dare call themselves Conservative

because THAT term = Fasicm in italia.

You do not want to vote for Berlusconi, you do not want to vote for Lega party.

It is hard to equate Italian politics to the U.S. because of inherent differences.

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Response to Drahthaardogs (Reply #4)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 07:46 PM

6. I've had to throw everything I know

Out the window when it comes to this! There really is no way to compare Italian to US politics and voting and boy was I confused for a while!

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Response to Drahthaardogs (Reply #4)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 02:18 PM

7. Excellent point

That's why my husband is like - eh? Yep - I'm absolutely AGAINST austerity - so is Berlusconi - so are a lot of the neo fascists aka conservatives.


It's really interesting to learn Italian from the Italian news and news papers. Because the 'nuance' used in language is so interesting . . .

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Response to Veruca Salt (Original post)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 03:55 PM

9. The following information may help

First,you are voting for a PARTY not a CANDIDATE. Each Party has a prioritized list of candidates for each voting district, and draws from the list depending on the proportion of votes they receive.

There are a LOT of Political Parties, and they are constantly changing names and alliances (joint candidate lists, etc). The Primary players (most likely to try to form Governing Coalitions) are:

Partito Democratico (Liberal): Primary Liberal Party
Il Popolo della LibertÓ (Conservative): Berlusconi's Party
Futuro e LibertÓ (Conservative): Splinter group from Il Popolo della LibertÓ; broke away over ethics issues
Unione di Centro (Centrist): Latest evolution of the Christian Democrats, who were the primary Leadership Party through the 1980's. Social conservative and economically liberal.
Italia dei Valori (Center-Left): Liberal but populist.
Lega Nord (Centrist) Northern regional Party; affiliated with Berlusconi's Il Popolo della LibertÓ

PD and PDL are likely to be the primary competitors, and both will need to form a coalition to govern. You don't say what your personal ideology is, but if it's not Centrist, you may find another Party in Alliance with one of these two.

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #9)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 10:50 PM

10. I took JustAnotherGen's hubby's advice

Picked a cause and went from there!

It boiled down to I would most align with Sinistra Ecologia e Liberta... But they're not on the North American ballot so I then found they aligned with Partito Democratico and then selected a couple choices for deputies that made it a point to mention lgbt equality in their campaign.

You're absolutely spot on about truly voting for a party first and foremost. You can pick preferences for who will get the senate or deputy position but you can also leave that blank. Just so long as a party is selected!

I learned a lot of things about Italian politics and also learned I have a lot more to learn!

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #9)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 07:38 AM

12. Great point!

A few more years and I'll be able to vote in my second country!

My husband is just starting to get 'politic' in his second country - but he's teaching me a LOT about what it means to NOT be trapped in a 'two party' system.

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