With the Italian general election only round the corner, the polls are starting to look really close. The anti-EU political party, Lega, has taken into the lead in the polls.
The Lega – formerly known as the Northern League – is expected to win 30 percent of the vote in the North Eastern region of Veneto, gaining three times more votes than Mr Berlusconi’s Forza Italia. Lega’s leader is a Italian Populist called Matteo Salvini – this man is most famous for bluntly calling for Brussels to go f**k themselves (he literally said this).
Lega is known for it’s strong views against illegal immigration, gay marriage and the European union; Lega has even declared their currency a ‘crime against humanity’. Matteo Salvini said: “I think the Lega will overcome Forza Italia, but Italians will carry out the ultimate poll, the elections.” Nationally the Eurosceptic party still falls slightly short of completely overcoming FI but latest polls show a steady increase – with the Lega gaining 0.5 percent to 14.1 percent in less than a week as Mr Berlusconi loses ground.
Matteo Salvini’s strong stance against the European Union is perhaps one of his strongest traits. This would explain his massive increase in support as millions of Italians are calling for ‘Italexit’ after seeing Great Britain leaving the single market. The decline of the euro is all thanks to the European Union’s inability to control their currency. The decline has effected the rest of the Mediterranean, not just Italy. It was only a year and a half ago that Greece went bankrupt for the same reasons Italy is now in decline. Salvini has even called for the EU to apologize to Italy for all the problems they caused. He hit back at EU requests for political certainty ahead of the Italian elections scheduled for March 4, saying Brussels should work harder to protect Italy’s interests. The Lega leader said: “It’s not us who have to give the European Union guarantees for the future. It’s the bureaucrats in Brussels who need to apologise to Italians.”
There have also been rumors that ex-PM Silvio Berlusconi had signed a secret deal with EU top figures Jean-Claude Juncker and Antonio Tajani to ensure the eurosceptic leader did not get elected. Berlusconi is Salvini’s coalition partner, essentially his running mate. These rumors were later called out to be false by Salvini himself, as he saw no evidence of Berlusconi doing this – let alone this being a highly treasonous move, if carried out, that will actually fuel the need for a populist PM.
He announced plans for Lega to form a Government and ask for the help of various European allies during the electoral campaign to win a majority to form the next Italian Government.
Salvini told reporters: “From what my sources and friends in Brussels have told me, there is no such pact. We are actually working to involve some of our allies in Europe in the electoral campaign. I think the Austrians could help. They are proof that if a party has clear plans it can form a government without obstacles.”