Forza Italia (2013)

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For the defunct political party active between 1994 and 2009, see Forza Italia.
Forza Italia
President Silvio Berlusconi
Political Counselor Giovanni Toti
Chief of Staff Mariarosaria Rossi
Spokesperson Deborah Bergamini
Founded 18 September 2013
(launched)
16 November 2013
(founded)
Preceded by The People of Freedom
Headquarters Piazza San Lorenzo in Lucina 4, Rome
Student wing Studenti per la Libertà
Youth wing Forza Italia Giovani
Women's wing Donne Azzurre[1]
Ideology Christian democracy[2]
Liberal conservatism[2]
Political position Centre-right[3][4]
International affiliation None
European affiliation None
European Parliament group European People's Party
Colors      Azure
Chamber of Deputies
69 / 630
Senate[5]
66 / 315
European Parliament
13 / 73
Regional Government
1 / 20
Website
forzaitalia.it
Politics of Italy
Political parties
Elections

Forza Italia (lit. "Forward Italy",[2][6][7][8] known also by his acronym FI) is a centre-right political party in Italy, led by Silvio Berlusconi, four-times Prime Minister of Italy.

The party, consisting of the former People of Freedom (PdL) party, is a revival of the defunct Forza Italia (FI), active from 1994 to 2009, when it was merged with National Alliance (AN) and several minor parties to form the PdL. Forza Italia's leading members include Giovanni Toti, Antonio Tajani, Renato Brunetta, Paolo Romani, Maurizio Gasparri, Mariastella Gelmini, Antonio Martino, Giancarlo Galan, Daniela Santanchè, Sandro Bondi and Raffaele Fitto.

History[edit]

The new FI, announced in June 2013,[9][10] was launched on 18 September[11][12][13][14] and the PdL was formally dissolved into the new FI on 16 November.[15] The day before a group of dissidents (mainly Christian democrats), led by Berlusconi's protégé Angelino Alfano, had broke by announcing the foundation of the alternative New Centre-Right (NCD) party.[16] Another group of PdL members, led by former mayor of Rome Gianni Alemanno, had left to form Italy First and are discussing a merger with Brothers of Italy.[17] According to Berlusconi, the PdL would become a coalition of centre-right parties, including the new FI, NCD, the new conservative outfit, possibly Lega Nord, etc.[18]

The symbol of FI made its return in the 2013 provincial elections in Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol, although in a regional fashion: "Forza Trentino"[19] and "Forza Alto Adige" (in list with Lega Nord Alto Adige/Südtirol).[20]

On 27 November the Senate approved Berlusconi's expulsion.[21] The day before FI had joined the opposition to Enrico Letta's government,[22] which was still supported by Alfano's NCD instead.

As of the end of December, Berlusconi was set to appoint three vice-presidents: Antonio Tajani (European Commissioner and vice-president of the European People's Party), Giovanni Toti (former editor of Studio Aperto and TG4,[23] two news programs of Berlusconi's Mediaset).[24] As a result of the resentement by the party's old guard on the alleged appointment of Toti as coordinator-at-large, Berlusconi appointed him merely "political counselor" to the party.[25][26]

In the 2014 European Parliament election the party obtained 16.8% of the vote and 13 seats.

Ideology[edit]

FI's ideology is similar to that of its predecessor, the PdL, a big tent centre-right party including Christian democrats, liberals, conservatives and social democrats[citation needed]. However, the split occurred between FI and NCD left the former with a more liberal base. According to an article from Corriere della Sera, on the so-called "ethical issues" (abortion, LGBT rights, etc.), the party, which aims at returning to its 1994's original values (including "liberalism, the socialist roots, even the radical component"), respects its MPs' "freedom of conscience" and is open to civil unions (some members go further and even propose same-sex marriage), while NCD's positions are "closer to those of the European traditionalist right".[27]

Generally speaking, with the long-prepared return to FI, Berlusconi aimed at returning to the party's "liberal roots": in doing that, he reinforced his ties with those liberals, like Antonio Martino, who had been marginalised in the PdL.[28]

The party is considered more Eurosceptic than its precursors. Its members have frequently criticised Germany's role in the European Union and the Euro.[29][30][31]

Factions and associated parties[edit]

Forza Italia is a plural party, including several distinct ideological trends but not recognizeds, some formed during the final months of The People of Freedom.[32] However, since its foundation in 2013, had holded various minor parties, mainly centrists or right-wing, that began informal factions in the party.[33]

Leadership[edit]

Electoral results[edit]

European Parliament[edit]

Election year # of
overall votes
 % of
overall vote
# of
overall seats won
+/– Leader
2014 4,614,364 (#3) 16.81
13 / 73
Silvio Berlusconi

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Voglia di Forza Italia: ecco la vera storia del simbolo che fa sognare tutti i moderati, il Giornale, July 7, 2013
  2. ^ a b c Italy, Parties and Election in Europe, 2013
  3. ^ Dinmore, Guy (15 May 2014). "Lacklustre Berlusconi campaign has risks for Renzi". FT.com. 
  4. ^ Agnew, Paddy (16 May 2014). "Silvio Berlusconi likens himself to Pope Francis". The Irish Times. 
  5. ^ Seven senators of FI sit in the "Great Autonomies and Freedom" Group.
  6. ^ Jane L. Chapman; Nick Nuttall (21 March 2011). Journalism Today: A Themed History. John Wiley & Sons. pp. 113–. ISBN 978-1-4443-9536-5. 
  7. ^ Barbara Pezzotti (14 September 2012). The Importance of Place in Contemporary Italian Crime Fiction: A Bloody Journey. Fairleigh Dickinson. pp. 36–. ISBN 978-1-61147-553-1. 
  8. ^ Thomas Jansen; Steven Van Hecke (19 May 2011). At Europe's Service: The Origins and Evolution of the European People's Party. Springer. pp. 63–. ISBN 978-3-642-19414-6. 
  9. ^ "Berlusconi al Tg1: torna Forza Italia e sarò io a guidarla" (in Italian). Il Sole 24 Ore. 28 June 2013. Retrieved 28 July 2013. 
  10. ^ "Berlusconi annuncia ritorno di Forza Italia. "Temo che sarò ancora il numero uno"" (in Italian). la Repubblica. 28 June 2013. Retrieved 24 August 2013. 
  11. ^ "Berlusconi Revives Forza Italia in Plea for Help Against Trials". Bloomberg News. 18 September 2013. 
  12. ^ "Silvio Berlusconi Relaunches Forza Italia on Senate Ousting Vote". International Business Times. 18 September 2013. 
  13. ^ "Berlusconi Vows to Stay in Politics if Ousted From Senate". The Wall Street Journal. 18 September 2013. 
  14. ^ "Berlusconi Stakes a Claim for Relevance, but Avoids Threats". The New York Times. 18 September 2013. 
  15. ^ "Berlusconi breaks away from Italian government after party splits". Reuters. 16 November 2013. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  16. ^ "È rottura tra Berlusconi e Alfano Il vicepremier annuncia i nuovi gruppi" (in Italian). Corriere della Sera. 16 November 2013. 
  17. ^ "Alemanno lancia "Prima l'Italia": "La priorità è portare il Paese fuori dalla crisi"" (in Italian). Il Messaggero. 13 October 2013. 
  18. ^ "L’addio al Pdl (in frantumi), rinasce Forza Italia" (in Italian). Corriere della Sera. 16 November 2013. 
  19. ^ "Nasce Forza Trentino: ultimo pressing su Mosna" (in Italian). Trentino. 11 September 2013. Retrieved 26 September 2013. 
  20. ^ "Biancofiore candida l’Artioli capolista" (in Italian). Alto Adige. 14 September 2013. Retrieved 26 September 2013. 
  21. ^ "Alle 17.42 l'annuncio dopo il voto palese L'ira di Forza Italia sui Cinquestelle" (in Italian). Corriere della Sera. 28 November 2013. 
  22. ^ "Forza Italia esce dalla maggioranza Alfano: "Un errore sabotare Letta"" (in Italian). Corriere della Sera. 26 November 2013. 
  23. ^ "Mediaset, cambio ai vertici Al posto di Giovanni Toti arrivano Giordano e Broggiato" (in Italian). il Giornale. 24 January 2014. Retrieved 25 January 2014. 
  24. ^ ""Forza Italia via dai palazzi romani" Si riparte da Milano (e dalla Brianza)" (in Italian). Corriere della Sera. 29 November 2013. 
  25. ^ http://www.forzaitalia.it/notizie/10314/nomine-forza-italia-berlusconi-nomina-giovanni-toti-consigliere-politico
  26. ^ "Berlusconi taps newsman as party advisor". Agenzia Nazionale Stampa Associata. 24 January 2014. Retrieved 24 January 2014. 
  27. ^ "Pd-azzurri: asse sui diritti (senza Ncd)" (in Italian). Corriere della Sera. 4 January 2014. 
  28. ^ "Berlusconi seeks return to liberal roots". Financial Times. 22 July 2012. 
  29. ^ "Quegli economisti euroscettici (proprio come Berlusconi)" (in Italian). Il Foglio. 31 October 2011. Retrieved 22 January 2014. 
  30. ^ "Can Berlusconi make a eurosceptic comeback?". la Repubblica/The Guardian. Presseurop. 26 June 2012. Retrieved January 22, 2014. 
  31. ^ "Berlusconi turns Eurosceptic in bid to return to power". City A.M. 18 July 2012. Retrieved 22 January 2014. 
  32. ^ http://www.liberoquotidiano.it/news/politica/1325297/Pdl--le-correnti--nomi-e-cognomi.html Pdl, le correnti: nomi e cognomi], Libero Quotidiano, October 7, 2013
  33. ^ Forza Italia, i dirigenti del Pid aderiscono al partito di Berlusconi, Giornale di Sicilia, October 30, 2013
  34. ^ Gianfranco Rotondi sfida Matteo Renzi e lancia l'Unione dei Movimenti Popolari: "Lui rottamatore, io restauratore", Huffington Post, March 1, 2014