Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi survived a confidence vote in the Italy Senate, but Thursday’s vote raised concerns over a potential government collapse after the populist 5-Star Movement boycotted the vote. The confidence vote, which included measures to offset an ongoing cost of living crisis, was 172-39 for Draghi.
Within minutes of the vote, Draghi met with President Sergio Mattarella, who will have to decide how to resolve the crisis. Potential next steps after the confidence vote include a possible resignation as Italian Prime Minister from Draghi. Mattarella could accept or reject any resignation by Draghi. The president could also ask Draghi to go before Parliament in the coming days to seek a formal vote on the government itself.
”For me it is not worth it. It is necessary to stay calm, to reflect, to think well, and then see what happens,” Rome resident Savino Mazzilli said Thursday. “Now with the international political crisis it’s better to sit still.”
By “international political crisis,” Mazzilli could be referring to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, a conflict that Draghi has weighed in on on behalf of Ukraine. Mazzilli could also be referring to the recently-announced resignation of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson or the fleeing of the Sri Lankan President after protesters overtook his palace in response to economic turmoil.
Draghi has repeatedly made it clear the 5-Star Movement among the coalition partners that signed up to be part of his government last year and that he wouldn’t continue without them. 5-Star emerged as the largest party in the previous election in 2018 but the party has since suffered defections and a loss of public support.
The move from the populist party could create an early election season. Giuseppe Conte, the former prime minister who leads 5-Star Movement, has been at odds with Draghi. With this vote in particular, Conte said the funds set aside for a cost of living support package were insufficient and that his senators could not support the bill. Conte and Draghi met on Wednesday to go over bill specifics but could not come to a compromise.