Skip to Content

Beppe Grillo, YouTube

A resounding defeat for Italy’s establishment

Italy’s prime minister Matteo Renzi has conceded defeat during a late-night press conference: “I lost and I say it loud and clear, even if I have a lump in my throat.”

Published: December 5, 2016, 5:53 am

    Read more

    Renzi crushing defeat on Sunday forces him to resign as he promised if Italians rejected his plan to reduce the role of the upper house Senate and regain powers from regional authorities.

    While all the votes have been counted in the country, the overseas ballots are not yet in, which could imply a small percentage shift without impacting the outcome. On a turnout of 68.48 percent, the “no” vote won by a seismic 59.26 percent, with the “yes” vote trailing behind at only 40.74 percent.

    An exit poll by the Piepoli Institute for state television station RAI, estimated “yes” voters at 42-46 percent, compared with 54-58 percent for “no”. Two other polls by Tecne’ for privately owned TV channel Mediaset, by EMG Acqua for La 7 gave the winners a similar lead of at least 10 points.

    “Tomorrow afternoon I will call a cabinet meeting … I will then go to the Quirinale, where I will tender my resignation to the president,” Renzi said. The Quirinale is the current official residence of the President of the Italian Republic, Sergio Mattarella.

    Matteo Renzi’s defeat deals a blow to the European Union, already reeling from a deluge of migrants, terror attacks and the rise of anti-establishment forces. The outcome is a stinging rebuke of the open-border, globalist establishment in Europe.

    Italy is the next country after Britain to reject the political status quo, while Austria voted narrowly against the nationalist candidate Norbert Höfer on Sunday. Both elections were closely watched.

    Opposition leader Matteo Salvini, of the anti-immigrant Northern League, said that if the exit polls are confirmed, the referendum will be a “victory of the people against the strong powers of three-quarters of the world”.

    “Renzi is going to go and with him the powerful lobbies who were also defeated,” Renato Brunetta, the parliamentary leader of former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi’s centre-right Forza Italia party, told the Telegraph.

    The anti-immigrant Northern League party, an ally of French far-right leader Marine Le Pen, has called for an early general election in Italy.

    The prime minister’s resignation could well mean early elections next year and the possibility of an anti-euro party, the opposition 5-Star Movement of Beppe Grillo gaining sufficient ground for another major upset.

    Renzi admitted that the vote had been a “clear” rejection of the proposed constitutional reform of the euro zone’s third-largest economy. “The experience of my government ends here,” he told the media.

    Europe’s establishment feared that victory for the Italian opposition “no” camp would cause renewed turmoil for Italy’s banks, pushing the euro zone towards a fresh crisis and thereby threatening their hold on power.

    The country’s banks have bad debts totalling some €280bn. Italy’s third largest bank, Monte dei Paschi, needs a €5bn recapitalisation and now, thanks to the referendum, borrowing costs are rising, making it very expensive to get capital for a bank which has already had two failed rescues.

    Reuters reported that the European Central Bank is preparing to step in if needed, but market analysts predicted a similar instability after Brexit.

    karin@praag.org

    Keep ​your language polite​. Readers from many different countries visit and contribute to Free West Media and we must therefore obey the rules in​,​ for example​, ​Germany. Illegal content will be deleted.

    If you have been approved to post comments without preview from FWM, you are responsible for violation​s​ of​ any​ law. This means that FWM may be forced to cooperate with authorities in a possible crime investigation.

    If your comments are subject to preview ​by FWM, please be patient. We continually review comments but depending on the time of day it can take up to several hours before your comment is reviewed.

    We reserve the right to del​ete​ comments that are offensive, contain slander or foul language, or are irrelevant to the discussion.

    Europe

    Merkel’s sidekick urges disenfranchisement of AfD voters

    BerlinGerman politician Peter Altmaier urged voters to not vote rather than vote for the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party. The Chief of Staff of the German Chancellery and Federal Minister for Special Affairs since December 2013, is regarded as one of Angela Merkel's most trusted advisors.

    Attacks on AfD surge ahead of elections

    With the German federal election approaching, attacks on Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) and its supporters have risen sharply.

    Rome freezes Northern League bank accounts in bid to stop Salvini’s rise

    RomeItalian Northern League (LN) leader Matteo Salvini said on Friday that he would appeal against a decision by a Genoa court to freeze party funds.

    Russian Germans flock to AfD

    In the German states that used to make up West Germany — particularly in the areas where many ethnic Russian Germans live — the AfD has recently received 20 or 30 or even 40 percent of the vote in state elections.

    Poland says Germany owes it a trillion dollars in WW2 reparations

    Polish foreign minister, and member of Poland’s ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party, said Germany should consider paying Poland World War II reparations. Witold Waszczykowski believes Germany owed his country as much as $1 trillion in reparations.

    AfD ignores German Muslim Council survey

    BerlinOn Monday, the Central Council of Muslims in Germany, the German Muslim League (Deutsche Muslim Liga) and the Islamische Zeitung newspaper revealed the results of a survey sent to German political parties soon to be represented in the next parliament, except the AfD.

    AfD top candidate storms out of German ZDF’s fake news

    "The AFD feels unfairly treated by the state broadcaster ZDF", headlined the Basler Zeitung while reporting on the election campaign debate "How's Germany" in which the AfD candidate walked out during a live debate.

    Breaking: Geert Wilders and Vlaams Belang strengthen ties in The Hague

    The HagueHigh level delegations of both Vlaams Belang [Flemish Interest] and the Dutch Freedom Party, the PVV are currently meeting in the Second Chamber building in The Hague. The meeting on Thursday will see the parties of Tom van Grieken and Geert Wilders sharing experiences and strategies to counter oppressive Islamization in Flanders and the Netherlands.

    Report: Italian secret service pays Libyan human traffickers to stop migrants

    BrusselsBelgian newspaper De Standaard reported on 31 August that the Italian secret service was paying Libyan human traffickers to keep immigrants away from the Meditteranean Sea.

    Wilders: ‘Future belongs to Europe of sovereign nations’

    Dutch anti-immigration politician Geert Wilders gave an historic speech on national sovereignty at the Ambrosetti conference at Villa d’Este, in Italy, sharing the stage with Euro commissioner Frans Timmermans.

    Go to archive