Mercoledì, 17 Ottobre 2018

Election 2018: the election law


Rome, February 6 - The election law that will be
used when Italy goes to the polls on March 4 is a mix of the
proportional representation and first-past-the-post systems.
It is a controversial law that was passed in parliament late
in 2017 with the help of confidence votes to overcome stiff
resistance from several groups, including the anti-establishment
5-Star Movement (M5S).
It was the fruit of an agreement between the ruling
centre-left Democratic Party (PD), Silvio Berlusconi's
centre-right Forza Italia, and their allies in the rightwing,
Euroskeptic Northern League.
It was widely deemed necessary to bring in a new law because
the systems for the Senate and the Lower House were different as
a result of a parts of a previous system being declared
unconstitutional and ex-premier and PD leader Matteo Renzi's
overhaul of Italy's political machinery being rejected in the
December 2016 Constitutional referendum.
But attempts to push through a bill that all the main parties
could agree on, including the M5S, fell through.
According to the Rosatellum 2 law, nicknamed after PD Lower
House whip Ettore Rosato, 36% of seats are allocated via
first-past-the-post - 232 out of 630 in the House and 116 out of
315 in the Senate - with the remaining 64% awarded via
proportional representation.
There is a 3% entry bar for individual parties and a 10% one
for coalitions.
If a party fails to reach 3%, but is part of a coalition that
gets 10% or more, that party's votes are transferred to the
biggest group in the coalition.
Voters will be faced with a single ballot slip with the names
of the candidates for the single-member constituencies - elected
via first-past-the-post - linked to the symbols of lists for the
proportional part and the relative candidates.
Unlike the never-used Italicum system that was passed in
2015, the Rosatellum does not have a system for awarding bonus
seats to the party or coalition that comes first to ensure it
has a working majority in parliament.
Indeed, many fear that the new system will fail to produce a
clear winner.
Some experts have calculated that a party or coalition will
need to get 40-42% of the vote to win the election, although
much depends on how the battles go in the winner-takes-all
Italians resident abroad will elect six Senators and 12 Lower
House MPs, although the candidates they elect do not necessarily
have to be living overseas.
The Rosatellum also has a equality clause that means neither
sex can have more than 60% of the candidates on any party list
or more than 60% of a party's first-elected list heads.

© Riproduzione riservata

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