Monday, June 26, 2006

Italian referendum results

Well, the results are out in today's referendum on the constitutional revision programme of the centre-right. Take-away points:

  • the proposal was rejected convincingly, with more than six in ten voters disapproving of the law

  • the South & Islands rejecting the proposal most strongly, followed by Central Italy, then the North

  • Forza Italia strongholds (Lombardy and the Veneto) were the only regions to support the reform

There are three main questions here. First, why did the proposal fail?; second, why did the regions which did support it more do so?; and third, what happens for those parties which 'lost' the campaign (Forza Italia and the Lega Nord)?

My guesses on the first two questions - and they remain guess es until we can see exit polls with breakdowns of support for the proposal according to party - is that the referendum was lost because it was difficult to explain and because the UDC and Alleanza Nazionale didn't want to spend much time doing so; that the regions which did support the proposal more strongly did so because they were regions full of voters who vote for Forza Italia and the Lega, and were mobilised by those parties.

Granted, Forza Italia can't have convinced in the South. It sweeps Sicily in general elections, but Sicily still voted convincingly against the proposal.

No comments: