Settling in. The new Parliament that emerged from the September elections began working last week and is now slowly taking shape. Having elected the Speakers of the Senate and the Lower House, MPs are now negotiating over several remaining seats.
- The election of the Speakers sparked friction between coalition allies Giorgia Meloni and Silvio Berlusconi, who lead Brothers of Italy and Forza Italia, respectively. Unsatisfied with his party’s share of key positions and angered by the soon-to-be PM, the latter even considered not entering the government and only granting external support.
Berlusconi and Meloni shake hands. That tussle seems to be over, as the leader of Forza Italia made the trip to BoI’s headquarters (which is contrary to his habit of receiving guests at his villas) with what appeared to be a peace offering. The two leaders then released a joint statement:
- “The meeting took place in an atmosphere of unity of intent and utmost cordiality and cooperation.” The two parties will “present themselves united, with the other coalition forces, at the forthcoming consultations” with President Sergio Mattarella, “and are working to give Italy a strong, cohesive and high-profile government as soon as possible, that will immediately set to work to tackle urgent issues,” namely the energy crisis.
Next steps. The president will begin consultations to form a new government on Thursday, but going by the allies’ statement, that’s little more than a formality at this point. The tentative timeline looks like this.
- Saturday, October 22: President Mattarella tells Ms Meloni to form a government. She accepts with reservation, as is tradition.
- Monday, October 24: Ms Meloni lifts the reservation– provided her coalition is ready to agree on the posts assignment.
- Tuesday, October 25: the swearing-in ceremony takes place, with Ms Meloni formally taking over from outgoing PM Mario Draghi and beginning to head Italy’s next executive. The newly established Council of the Minister holds its first meeting that same day.