|56th Prime Minister of Italy|
22 February 2014
Pietro Grasso (Acting)
|Preceded by||Enrico Letta|
|Secretary of the Democratic Party|
15 December 2013
|Preceded by||Guglielmo Epifani|
|Mayor of Florence|
22 June 2009 – 24 March 2014
|Preceded by||Leonardo Domenici|
|Succeeded by||Dario Nardella|
|President of Florence Province|
14 June 2004 – 22 June 2009
|Preceded by||Michele Gesualdi|
|Succeeded by||Andrea Barducci|
11 January 1975 |
|Political party||Democratic Party (2007–present)
The Daisy (2002–2007)
People's Party (1996–2002)
|Spouse(s)||Agnese Landini (1999–present)|
|Alma mater||University of Florence|
Matteo Renzi (Italian pronunciation: [matˈtɛo ˈrɛntsi]; born 11 January 1975) is an Italian politician who has been Prime Minister of Italy since 22 February 2014 and the Secretary of the Democratic Party since 15 December 2013. He was previously the President of the Province of Florence from 2004 to 2009, the Mayor of Florence from 2009 to 2014 and President of the Council of the European Union from July to December 2014.
At the age of 39, Renzi overtook Benito Mussolini's record as the youngest person to become Prime Minister of Italy since unification in 1861. He is also the first to be elected Prime Minister as a Mayor.
Matteo Renzi has been described as the de facto leader of the European Socialists, in opposition to Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats (the two leaders are together referred to as Merkenzi). Moreover he was ranked as the third most influential under 40 person in the world, by the American magazine Fortune and in the Top 100 Global Thinkers by Foreign Policy, for "bucking Bunga Bunga politics".
- 1 Early life
- 2 Early political career
- 3 Prime Minister
- 4 Elections
- 5 Political views
- 6 Controversies
- 7 Personal life
- 8 Cabinet
- 9 Authored books
- 10 References
- 11 External links
Renzi was born in Florence, Tuscany in 1975; he was the second of four children and his father, Tiziano Renzi, was a small business owner and Christian Democratic municipal councillor in Rignano sull'Arno. Renzi grew up in an observant Catholic family in Rignano sull'Arno, but he studied in Florence at the Classical Lyceum Dante Alighieri, where he passed the final exam with the vote 60/60, but he risked the rejection because, as students' representative, he refused to withdraw a school newspaper in which there were harsh critics to some professors; during this time he was a Scout in the Association of Catholic Guides and Scouts of Italy (AGESCI).
In 1999 he graduated from the University of Florence with a degree in law, having written his thesis on Giorgio La Pira, the former Christian Democratic Mayor of Florence. He then went on to work for the CHIL Srl, a marketing company owned by his family coordinating the sales service of the newspaper La Nazione.
Before entering politics, Renzi was also a football referee in amateur levels and a futsal player. In 1994, he participated as a competitor for five consecutive episodes in the television program Wheel of Fortune hosted by Mike Bongiorno, winning 48 million lire.
Early political career
Renzi's interest in politics began in high school. In 1996 he was one of the founders of the committee in support of Romano Prodi's candidature as Prime Minister in the general election; that same year he joined the centrist Italian People's Party, and became its Provincial Secretary in 1999. In the same year he married Agnese Landini, with whom he had three children.
In 2001 he joined Francesco Rutelli's The Daisy party, composed by members of the disbanded People's Party. On 13 June 2004 he was elected President of the Province of Florence, with 59% of the vote, as the candidate of the centre-left coalition. He was the youngest person to become President of an Italian Province. In the years as President of the Province, Renzi expressed his ideas against the "political caste", and during his mandate he succeeded in reducing taxes and decreasing the number of Province's employees and managers.
Mayor of Florence
After five years as the President of the Province Florence, Renzi announced that he would seek election as the Mayor of Florence. On 9 June 2009, Renzi, by now a member of the Democratic Party, won the election with 48% of the vote, compared to 32% for Giovanni Galli. As mayor he halved the number of city councilors, installed 500 free WiFi access points across the city, reduced kindergarten waiting lists by 90%, and increased spending on social welfare programs and schools.
One year after being sworn in as Mayor, and with his popularity in national opinion polls increasing, Renzi organised a public meeting with another young party administrator Debora Serracchiani at the Leopolda station in Florence to discuss Italian politics, after stating that a complete change was also necessary in his party. Others prominent Democratic Party members who aligned themseleves with Renzi's programme were Matteo Ricchetti, President of the Regional Council of Emilia-Romagna, Davide Faraone, a regional councillor from the Sicilian Regional Assembly, and Giuseppe Civati, a prominent member of the Democratic Party in Lombardy and member of the Lombard Regional Council.
Following this public meeting, the Italian media gave Renzi the nickname "il Rottamatore", or "The Scrapper". In 2011, he organized a second meeting, also in Florence, where he wrote down one hundred topics of discussion. During this time he began to be strongly criticised by other members of his party closer to the then-Secretary Pier Luigi Bersani, after his suggestion that Italian politicians of the same generation as then-Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi should retire.
In September 2012, Renzi announced that he would seek to lead the centre-left coalition in the 2013 general election; the other four candidates were Pier Luigi Bersani, Secretary of the Democratic Party, Nichi Vendola, Leader of the Left Ecology Freedom, Laura Puppato, a Democratic Deputy from Veneto and Bruno Tabacci, Leader of the Democratic Centre. After the first round of the December election, Renzi gained 35.5% of the vote, finishing second behind Bersani and qualifying for the second ballot. Renzi eventually gained a total of 39% of the vote, against Bersani's 61%.
During the subsequent campaign in the 2013 election in March, Renzi backed Bersani by organising large public rallies in Florence, but come the election the Democratic Party only gained 25.5% of the vote, despite opinion polls placing the party at almost 30%.
In April during the elections for the President of the Republic, Renzi caused a minor controversy by openly criticising the candidacies of both Franco Marini and Anna Finocchiaro, two long-standing members of his Democratic Party.
Following the resignation of Pier Luigi Bersani in April 2013, Renzi stood a second time for the position of Secretary of the Democratic Party; he was supported by a number of his former political opponents, such as former Party Secretaries Walter Veltroni and Dario Franceschini, Deputy Marina Sereni, MEP David Sassoli and Turin Mayor Piero Fassino. Other supporters of his included Deputies like Gianni Dal Moro, Francesco Sanna, Francesco Boccia, Lorenzo Basso and Enrico Borghi, all of whom were considered close to Prime Minister Enrico Letta.
The other two candidates for Party Secretary were Gianni Cuperlo, Member of the Chamber of Deputies and former Secretary of the Italian Communist Youth Federation, and Giuseppe Civati, a Deputy from Lombardy and former supporter of Renzi. In the December leadership election, Renzi was elected with 68% of the popular vote, compared to 18% for Gianni Cuperlo and 14% for Giuseppe Civati. He therefore became the new Secretary of the Democratic Party and the centre-left's prospective candidate for Prime Minister.
Throughout January and February 2014 there were multiple reports of persistent leadership tensions between Renzi and Prime Minister Enrico Letta, who had been the Deputy Secretary under Bersani, with many claiming that Renzi was pressuring Letta to resign in his favour. On 12 February Letta publicly demanded that Renzi make his position clear, and Renzi subsequently called a meeting of the Democratic Party leadership for the following evening. Just before the meeting took place, Renzi publicly called on Letta to resign and allow him to form a new government. Letta initially resisted the demand, but following a vote on Renzi's proposal during the meeting, which Letta did not attend, he announced that he would tender his resignation as Prime Minister on 14 February.
On 13 February 2014, following tensions between Prime Minister Enrico Letta and Renzi, President Giorgio Napolitano removed Letta as Prime Minister the following day. The Democratic Party leadership voted heavily in favour of backing Renzi's call for "a new government, a new phase and a radical programme of reform". Minutes after the Party backed the Renzi proposal by 136 votes to 16, with two abstentions, Palazzo Chigi – the official residence of the Prime Minister – announced that Letta would be going to the Quirinale on Friday to tender his resignation to President Napolitano.
In an earlier speech, Renzi had paid tribute to Letta, saying the meeting was not intended to put him "on trial". But, without directly proposing himself as the next Prime Minister, he said the Eurozone's third-largest economy urgently needed "a new phase" and "radical programme" to push through badly-needed reforms. The motion he put forward made clear "the necessity and urgency of opening a new phase with a new executive". Speaking to party leaders, Renzi said Italy was "at a crossroads" and faced either holding fresh elections or a new government without a return to the polls. On 14 February, President Napolitano accepted Letta's resignation from the office of Prime Minister.
Following Letta's resignation, Renzi formally received the task of forming a new government from President Napolitano on 17 February. Renzi held several days of talks with party leaders, all of which he broadcast live on the internet, before unveiling his Cabinet on 21 February, which contained members of his Democratic Party, the New Centre-Right, the Union of the Centre and the Civic Choice. His Cabinet is Italy's youngest government to date, with an average age of 47. In addition, it is also the first in which the number of female ministers is equal to the number of male ministers, excluding the Prime Minister.
The following day Renzi was sworn in as Prime Minister, becoming the youngest Prime Minister in the history of Italy. His rise to become Prime Minister was widely seen as a sign of much-needed generational change, and at the time he took office he enjoyed by far the highest approval rating of any politician in the country.
On 12 March 2014, the Italian Cabinet issued a law-decree on fixed-term contracts, called the Poletti Decree, from the name of the Labour Minister Giuliano Poletti, as well as a bill proposing a reform on the Italian labor market called Jobs Act. A reduction in the tax burden of about €80 was announced for those earning less than 1500 Euros per month.
On April 18, the Italian Cabinet approved a law-decree which provided for the reduction of Income Tax for employees and assimilated workers earning up to €24,000 gross per year. The net monthly salary was foreseen to increase by €80, through a tax credit from the month of May 2014.
On April 30, Matteo Renzi, together with the Minister for the Public Administration Marianna Madia, presented the guidelines for the reform of the Public Administration, subsequently approved by the Cabinet on June 13, 2014.
In September the government proposed a new labor reform, the Jobs Act by the Minister Giuliano Poletti, which provided, among others, the abolition of the Article 18 of the Workers' Statute, which protects workers from unlawful dismissal. The proposal was heavily criticized by the biggest Italian trade union the General Confederation of Labour (CGIL) and its leaders Susanna Camusso and Maurizio Landini (Secretary of CGIL metalworkers' wing, FIOM). Moreover also the left-wing of the Democratic Party, led by the former National Secretary Pier Luigi Bersani, criticized the government for the reform, threatening to vote against it. Renzi accused the trade unions and the left-wing faction of his party to be conservatives and to defend a policy which caused unemployment.
On 29 September the National Committee of the Democratic Party voted the Jobs Act promoted by the government, and despite the disagreements within the party, the reform passed with 130 votes in favor, with 20 against and 11 abstained; during the assembly Renzi stated that he was ready to deal with the trade unions on the labour reform.
In the night between 8 and 9 October the Italian Senate voted the confidence vote to approve the Jobs Act and the reform passed with 165 votes in favour with 111 against and 2 abstained, marking a first step for the most ambitious economic legislation of his eight-month-old government. Before the vote the Labour Minister Giuliano Poletti was forced to cut his speech short earlier due to the loud protests of the Five Star Movement and Lega Nord oppositions, some of whom threw coins and papers. The German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who was also in Milan and has been among the most vocal about Italy’s need for speedy economic reforms, said the labour law marked an “important step” to reduce “employment barriers” in in the Eurozone’s third-largest economy.
On October 25, almost one million people took part to a mass protest in Rome, organized by the main trade union of the country, the CGIL, in opposition to the job reform of the government. Also some members of the left-wing faction of the Democratic Party, like Gianni Cuperlo, Stefano Fassina and Pippo Civati, participated to the protest. On 8 November more than 100,000 public employees protested in Rome in a demonstration organized by the three main trade unions of the country, CGIL, CISL and UIL, against the labour reform and the Stability Law.
On November 25, the Chamber of Deputies approved the Jobs Act with 316 votes, but the Five Star Movement, Lega Nord and almost forty members of the PD minority had left the house, deserting the vote, to protest against the reform. Morevoer on 3 December the Italian Senate finally approved the Jobs Act with 166 votes; even though the disagreements with the government, the left-wing minority of the PD voted the reform.
In March the Council of Ministers approved the auctioning of a large number of luxury cars that were used to transport heads of state, as he felt they were an unnecessary use of government money. The cars included nine Maseratis, two Jaguars, and various other cars such as BMWs and Alfa Romeos. Out of the 1500 cars put up for sale, 170 sold immediately over eBay.
In April, as part of his industrial reforms, Renzi forced the chief executives of Italy's biggest state-owned companies, including Eni, Terna, Finmeccanica, Enel and Poste Italiane, to resign. He subsequently appointed women to the majority of new positions, making it the first time any woman had served as a chief executive of a state-owned company in Italy.
On August 1, the Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi explained in a press conference the guidelines of law-decree called Sblocca Italia or "Unlock Italy", which, in the intentions of the Government, is to facilitate the implementation of major projects, civil works and infrastructure that are currently suspended, as well as achieve further administrative simplification. A month of public consultations would take place in relation to such guidelines.
On September 1, 2014, Renzi explained in a press conference that the site passodopopasso.italia.it would allow citizens to monitor the progress of the Millegiorni (Thousand days) program .
Since his election as Prime Minister one of Renzi's most important tasks and focus was the approval of constitutional reforms, which would change the Italian institutional framework, remained unchanged since 1 January 1948, when the Italian Constitution cane into force, after being enacted by the Constituent Assembly on 22 December 1947. The first step was the abolition of the so-called "perfect bicameralism", which gave the same powers to the two houses of the Parliament, the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate of the Republic. Renzi's government wanted to abolish the Senate, creating a house composed by members from Regions and local Autonomies.
On March 26, despite the controversy raised by several parties belonging to the majority coalition, the government won a confidence vote in the Senate on the Delrio Bill reforming the provinces, with 160 voting in favour and 133 against. On May 6, the Constitutional Affairs Committee of the Senate approved the Government’s Bill on the reform of the Italian Senate. Finally on August 8, the Senate approved the constitutional reform proposed by the government with 183 votes in favour, and 4 abstentions.
Due to his ambitious reforms that provided for the abolition of the Senate, the increase of powers of the Prime Minister and a new electoral law, Renzi was accused, by numerous politicians and constitutionalists like Stefano Rodotà or Fausto Bertinotti, to be an authoritarian leader who wants to reduce democracy.
Another focus of Renzi's program was the introduction of a new electoral law to repleace the current one, the so-called Porcellum (from the Italian word porco, literally "pig"), a semi-proportional representation system wanted by former right-wing Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi in 2005 and declared unconstitutional by the Italian Constitutional Court in 2013.
After few weeks in power, Renzi proposed the law Italicum, a proportional representation system with a majority bonus for the party which reaches 40% of votes. To approve the new electoral law, opposed by Five Star Movement, Left Ecology Freedom and a part of the PD minority, Renzi gained the support of the former Prime Minister Berlusconi, who was still the leader of Forza Italia party, even if he was expelled by the Senate due to the sentence for tax evasion. The alliance between Renzi and Berlusconi was named Nazareno Pact, from the name of the Rome's street where is set the headquarter of the Democratic Party and where the two leaders met for the first time to discuss about the reform.
For the alliance with Berlusconi, who is considered the archrival of the Democratic Party, Renzi was harshly criticized by the PD left-wing minority and SEL, but also by the populist Five Stars of Beppe Grillo who saw the Nazareno Pact as the proof that there are no differences between the Italian centre-left and centre-right.
On 27 January 2015, the Italicum was approved by the Italian Senate with 184 votes against 66; almost twenty Senators of the Democratic Party's left-wing minority did not take part to the vote in opposition to the law.
On March 24, 2014 Renzi created the Anti-corruption National Authority (ANAC) and nominated the Italian magistrate Raffaele Cantone as President of the organization to fight one of the most serious problem in Italian modern history, the corruption.
In May 2014, following a corruption scandal in the Expo 2015 in Milan, the ANAC formed a special unity ith the tasks of monitoring and supervising the fairness and transparency of procedures relating to implementation of the works of the great event.
On May 22, 2014, the Italian Cabinet of Ministers approved the Law-decree on culture for the preservation of the Italian historic, artistic and cultural heritage.
On August 8, the Italian Cabinet Cabinet approved a law-decree contrasting the phenomenon of lawlessness and violence at sporting events and provided for the international protection of migrants.
On 3 September during a press conference after the Council of Ministers' reunion, Renzi announced an online consultation with students, teachers and common citizens, ahead of the school reform promoted by the Education Minister Stefania Giannini.
On 15 December 2014, during a ceremony at the Italian National Olympic Committee, Renzi officially launched the candidacy of Rome for the 2024 Summer Olympics. The Prime Minister stated, "Our country too often seems hesitant. It's unacceptable not to try or to renounce playing the game. Sport in Italy is a way of life and a way of looking at the future. I don’t know if we’ll make it, but the Olympic candidacy is one of the most beautiful things we can do for our kids, for us, for Italy."
Since the beginning of his premiership, Renzi maintained close relationships with the United States of Barack Obama, supporting the military intervention against the Islamic State, with hundreds of troops and four Panavia Tornado aircraft, and the international sanctions against Russia after the invasion of East Ukraine. Matteo Renzi often criticized the austerity measures imposed in the Eurozone by Angela Merkel and the European People's Party; with the other leaders of the European Socialists, but also with the Conservative Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, David Cameron, demanded the cessation of the austerity and the creation of a new policy focused on economic growth and sustainability.
Renzi had also good relations with the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe, who praised the economic policies of Renzi's government. A key ally of Renzi in the Mediterranean is the Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi; the two leaders had many bilateral meetings where they discussed about the problem of immigration to Italy and the increasing tensions in the Middle East and North Africa.
Especially after the European election in 2014, which saw Renzi's Democratic Party becoming, with more than 11 millions of votes, the most voted party in whole European Union and also the party with the most high number of MEPs, Matteo Renzi emerged as prominent leader of the European Socialists. Often Renzi has been opposed to German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who is considered the de facto leader of the European People's Party and according to some analysts also of the European Union; the two leaders are together referred to as Merkenzi. Renzi and Merkle had lot of bilateral meetings, the first one was on March 17 in Berlin, just few weeks after Renzi's election as Prime Minister; the two leaders discussed about the important reforms that the Italian government planned to approve in Italy and in the EU. On 22 January 2015, the German Chancellor went in Florence where she lauded the "impressive" reforms carried by the Italian government; on the following day the two leaders had a press conference in front of Michelangelo's David.
A European leader who is considered a Renzi's close ally is the President of the French Republic and leader of the Socialist Party, François Hollande. On 15 March Renzi met in Paris the French head of State, with whom agreed in starting a common economic policy focused not only on the austerity measures imposed by the so-called Troika (European Commission, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund) but also on more flexible policies to promote the economic growth in the EU. Renzi is also a close friend of the French Prime Minister Manuel Valls, in fact the two leaders are considered the heirs of the Third Way politics of Tony Blair and Bill Clinton.
On 7 January 2015 after the Islamic terrorist attack in Paris which cause the death of 17 people, Renzi expressed a feeling of horror and dismay regarding the attack. He offered his best wishes to the people of France and noted his close relationships with President François Hollande and Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo. "Violence will always lose against freedom and democracy," he added. On January 11, he participated with more than forty world leaders and three millions people to the Republican March, organized by President Hollande.
Matteo Renzi had also a good relationship with his British counterpart David Cameron, the leader of the Conservative Party of the United Kingdom; during their first meeting on April 1, the British Prime Minister stated that the reforms planned by Renzi were "ambitious" and that together they will change the European Union. On the same day Renzi met also the former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair, who is considered an example and an inspiration by the Italian PM. On October 2, the Italian leader returned to London, in 10 Downing Street, and with Cameron expressed their policies to reform the European Union and overcome the crisis.
On 4 and 5 September Renzi participated in the NATO summit in Wales; before the official start of the summit, he had a discussion with the Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, US President Barack Obama and the other three leaders of the European G4, to discuss the crisis with Russia. This summit was the first after the Russian military intervention in Ukraine and the offensive by the Islamic State of the Caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
On August 1, Renzi officially proposed the Italian Foreign Minister, Federica Mogherini, as the new High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, in the European Commission led by Jean-Claude Juncker, former Prime Minister of Luxembourg.
On December 30, Renzi was in Tirana, guest of the Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama; Renzi expressed his support to the accession of Albania to the European Union. The two leaders also discussed about the shipwreck of the Italian ferry MS Norman Atlantic, which caused the death of eleven passengers and two Albanian rescuers in the Adriatic Sea.
As his predecessors, Renzi continued a close relations with the United States and his President Barack Obama. Italy supported the USA in the military intervention against the Islamic State, moreover Italy partecipated to the international sanctions against the Russian Federation after the invasion of East Ukraine.
Matteo Renzi met for the first time President Obama on March 24, during his Presidential trip in Rome, where he met also Pope Francis and the President of Italy, Giorgio Napolitano. Obama stated that he had remained impressed by the reforms that the Italian government wants to undertake. The US President is considered by Renzi an example for his policy.
On September 22, Renzi visited the Silicon Valley, in California, where he met young Italian emigrants who created startups in the USA. The Italian Prime Minister also visited the headquarters of Twitter, Google and Yahoo!. Renzi was accompanied by the former Secretaries of State, Condoleezza Rice and George Shultz, and by the former American ambassador in Italy Ronald P. Spogli. Than he dined at Stanford University, guest of University President John L. Hennessy. On the following day Matteo Renzi spoke at the United Nations summit in New York City, focused on the problem of the climatic change.
After the summit Renzi met the former President of the United States, Bill Clinton and his wife, the former Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton. At the end of his trip Renzi participated in a reception offered by the US President Barack Obama. On September 24, Renzi took part at the Council on Foreign Relations talking about the reforms implemented and proposed by his government.
On the following day the Italian Prime Minister spoke at the United Nations General Assembly, focusing his speech on the threat of the Islamic State and the problem of the illegal immigration to Italy, which counted more than 100,000 refugees since the beginning of 2014. After his speech Renzi met the Italian American Mayor of New York, Bill de Blasio.
In modern times Russia had a privileged relationship with Italy, escpecially under the premiership of the conservative leader Silvio Berlusconi, who is a personal friend of Russian President Vladimir Putin. But after the Russian military intervention in Ukraine, the relations worsened.
On 2 March 2014, Renzi accused President Putin of having committed "an unacceptable violation". On 19 March, during a speech in the Chamber of Deputies, Renzi stated that the Crimean status referendum was illegal and that the G8 countries must start cooperating to solve the crisis and prevent a return to the Cold War. On 4 and 5 June, he subsequently participated in the G7 summit in Brussels, the first one held after the suspension of Russia from the G8 following the annexation of Crimea in March. Renzi phoned to Vladimir Putin on August 28, asking him to stop the "intolerable escalation" and to reach a peace agreement with the Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to stop the pro-Russian conflict in that regions. Renzi and Putin had also a bilateral meeting on October 16, when the Italian a Prime Minister hosted, as head of the government, the Asia–Europe Meeting (ASEM) in Milan, with other 53 leaders of the world.
On November 15, during the G-20 summit in Brisbane, the two leaders had another bilateral meeting, where they discussed about the Ukrainian crisis, in which Russia has been accused of supporting the rebels and having invaded Ukraine, but also on the civil wars in Libya and Syria.
On March 4, just few days after his election as Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi went to Tunis where he had a bilateral meeting with the Prime Minister of Tunisia, Mustapha Ben Jafar. With Jafar, Renzi discussed about the problem of the illegal immigration to Italy from the coasts of North Africa. The trip to Tunisia was the first official one made by Renzi as Prime Minister of Italy.
On July 19, Matteo Renzi started his Presidential trip in Africa, meeting the President of Mozambique, Armando Guebuza. Renzi signed with Guebuza some economic pacts to create investments by the Italian government-onwned oil company Eni in the African country for 50 bilion dollars. On the following day he visited the Republic of Congo where he met the President Denis Sassou Nguesso, with whom Renzi signed a cooperation for the extraction of oil in the country. Some journalists criticized the meeting with Sassou Nguesso, who is considered one of the worst and more corrupted dictators of Africa. Then, on July 21, day Renzi met the President of Angola, José Eduardo dos Santos, in Luanda. During the visit Renzi placed a wreath in the mausoleum of the 1st Angolan President Agostinho Neto.
On July 24, under the direction of the Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini, the Italian government has worked for the release of Mariam Ibrahim, a Sudanese woman sentenced to death for being Christian. After some weeks of imprisonment, thank to the good relations between Sudan and Italy, Mrs. Ibrahim was finally allowed to fly to Italy on a government plane.
On December 2, Renzi went to Algiers, where he met the Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika and the Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal. With the two leaders of the country, Matteo Renzi discussed about the 2014 Libyan crisis, the immigration from North Africa, but also about the gas imports from Algeria in alternative to the Russian one, following the tensions between the European Union and the Russian Federation in 2014.
On 2 August Matteo Renzi met Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, President of Egypt, in Cairo, with whom talked about the Israel-Gaza conflict. Renzi stated that Italy will support the Egyptian truce proposal; moreover the two leaders asked an immediate cease-fire and the beginning of the peace treaties. Renzi was the first Western world leader to visit Egypt after el-Sisi election as President.
On 20 August Renzi visited Iraq, during the insurgency of the Islamic State. The Italian Prime Minister met in Baghdad the Head of the State Fuad Masum, the Prime Minister designated Haider al-Abadi and his predecessor Nouri al-Maliki. On the same day Renzi went to Erbil to met the President of the Iraqi Kurdistan Mas'ud Barzani and the Prime Minister Nechervan Barzani. While Renzi was in Iraq, the Italian Parliament approved the proposal to armed the Peshmerga soldiers who were fighting against the Islamic State of the Caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
On 23 September, during the 69th General Assembly of the United Nations, Renzi had a bilateral meeting with the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, with whom the Italian Prime Minister talked about the problem of the climate change and the increasing tensions in the Middle East.
On 11 December Renzi went to Ankara, where he had a bilateral meeting with President Erdoğan; the Italian Prime Minister expressed his support to the Turkish accession to the European Union. On the same day he met the Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu. When he returned in Rome, on the same day, he met the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu; the leader of Israel stated that his nation will not withdraw within the boundaries of 1967, before the Six-Day War, as according to him the United Nations planned to do.
On 8 January 2015 the Italian Prime Minister met in Abu Dhabi the Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan to address issues of foreign policy and economic dossiers such as Alitalia-Etihad. The two leaders discussed joint cooperation domains and enhancing trade exchange and cooperation in the energy and aerospace fields.
On 6 June Matteo Renzi met in Rome the Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzō Abe. Abe congratulates Renzi for the economic and constitutional reforms promised by the Italian government. The two leaders also discussed about the relations with China and the stability of the East Asia area.
On 9 June, Renzi travelled to Hanoi, Vietnam to meet with the President Trương Tấn Sang the Prime Minister Nguyễn Tấn Dũng and the General Secretary of the Communist Party Nguyễn Phú Trọng to sign economic treaties worth some 5 billion US dollars. He was the first Italian Prime Minister to officially visit Vietnam since 1973, when diplomacy first began between Italy and North Vietnam. During the visit Renzi placed a wreath in the mausoleum of the former North Vietnamese President Ho Chi Minh.
On June 11, Renzi met Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing, who congratulated him for the "important reforms" undertaken by his Government. Xi also stated that China would continue cooperation with Italy ahead of Expo 2015 in Milan. Few months later, on October 14, he signed, in Rome, with the Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang twenty treaties for 8 billion euros.
On 15 November Renzi took part to the G20 summit in Brisbane, where he had a bilateral meeting with the Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott. The main topics of the meeting were the economic growth and the fight against the Islamic terrorism.
2009 Florence mayoral election
On 6 June 2009 Renzi run in the municipal election to become Mayor of Florence; in the first round he arrived first, with 97,882 votes and 47.4%, not enough to have been elected in the first ballott.
2012 Centre-left primary election
The 2012 primary election determined the leader of the coalition Italy. Common Good, who will stand as common candidate for the office of Prime Minister in the subsequent general election, which will take place on 24 and 25 February 2013.
Renzi announced his candidacy in September; the other four candidates were Pier Luigi Bersani, Secretary of the Democratic Party, Nichi Vendola, Leader of the Left Ecology Freedom, Laura Puppato, a Democratic Deputy from Veneto and Bruno Tabacci, Leader of the Democratic Centre.
On the first round, held on 25 November, Renzi gained 35.5% of the vote, finishing second behind Bersani and qualifying for the second ballot. In the second ballot, on 2 December Renzi eventually gained a total of 39% of the vote, against Bersani's 61%.
2013 Democratic Party leadership election
Altre the resignation of Pier Luigi Bersani, due to the result of 2013 general election, in April 2013 Renzi announced that he would run as party's leader in the primary election of December.
The other two candidates for Party Secretary were Gianni Cuperlo, Member of the Chamber of Deputies and former Secretary of the Italian Communist Youth Federation supported by the social democratic establishment and Giuseppe Civati, a Deputy from Lombardy and former supporter of Renzi.
2014 European election
In the European Parliament election held on 25 May 2014, the first national election Renzi had faced since becoming Prime Minister, his Democratic Party (PD) won 40.8% of the vote with 11,203,231 votes, becoming by far the largest party in the country with 31 MEPs. The PD won the most votes of any single party across the whole of the European Union and became the largest social-democrat parliamentary group.
Thanks to the good electoral result, Renzi succeeded in nominating the Italian Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini as new High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, after the British Catherine Ashton.
Renzi has regularly advocated for a generational replacement of the current Italian ruling class. He also supports various battles to reduce the cost of politics, including the practical elimination of one of the two houses of the Italian Parliament, the abolition of public financing for political parties, the abolition of annuities, direct election of politicians by citizens, and the deletion of state contributions to political party newspapers. Renzi has also in the past stated that he is in favour of civil partnerships and that, from a political perspective, marriage should not be viewed as a sacrament.
Moreover under Renzi's secretariat, the Democratic Party took a strong stance in favour of constitutional reform and of a new electoral law, on the road toward a two-party system.
Anyway it is not an easy task to find the exact political trend represented by Renzi and his supporters, who have been known as Renziani. The nature of Renzi's progressivism is a matter of debate and has been linked both to liberalism and populism. According to Maria Teresa Meli of Corriere della Sera, Renzi "pursues a precise model, borrowed from the Labour Party and Bill Clinton's Democratic Party", comprising "a strange mix (for Italy) of liberal policy in the economic sphere and populism. This means that, on one side, he will attack the privileges of trade unions, especially of the CGIL, which defends only the already protected, while, on the other, he will sharply attack the vested powers, bankers, Confindustria and a certain type of capitalism."
Renzi has occasionally been compared to former British Prime Minister Tony Blair for his political views. Renzi himself has previously claimed to be as supporter of Blair's ideology of the Third Way, regarding an objective to synthesise liberal economics and left-wing social policies.
In an interview for the most famous Italian talk show, Che tempo che fa by Fabio Fazio, Renzi stated that the meeting with Bill and Hillary Clinton was the most interesting part of his trip to the United States, because he considered them as models for the world's progressive left-wing.
Due to the constitutional reforms that provided for the abolition of the Senate, the increase of powers of the Prime Minister and a new electoral law, Renzi was accused, by numerous politicians and constitutionalists but also by the Five Star Movement and Left Ecology Freedom oppositions to be an authoritarian leader who wants to reduce democracy.
Matteo Renzi is married since 1999 to a teacher, Agnese Landini, with whom he has two sons, Francesco and Emanuele, and a daughter, Ester. Renzi is a regular Mass-goer and was active in a Catholic branch of the Scouts.
Renzi is a fan of the American TV series House of Cards and some critics identified the rise to power of Francis Underwood (starred by Kevin Spacey) with the one undertaken by Renzi against the former Prime Minister Enrico Letta.
After the 2014 local elections, his sister Benedetta has been elected municipal councillor and assessor for the Democratic Party, in Castenaso, a small comune near Bologna. Also their father, Tiziano, was a municipal councillor in Rignano sull'Arno, near Florence, for the Christian Democracy party.
The Cabinet is composed of members of the Democratic Party (PD), New Centre-Right (NCD), Civic Choice (SC), the Union of the Centre (UdC) and three independents. The Cabinet is Italy's youngest government to date, with an average age of 47. In addition, it is also the first in which the number of female ministers is equal to the number of male ministers, excluding the Prime Minister.
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- At the age of 39 years and one month, he took this record from Benito Mussolini who had entered in office at the age of 39 years and three months.
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- Renzi e Veltroni per un Pd «cool» che faccia dimenticare Bersani
- Fassino: “Renzi motiva anche i delusi, Cuperlo? È il candidato della nostalgia”
- Primarie Pd, candidati depositano le firme. Si allunga lista dei lettiani pro Renzi
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- Jobs Act, Bersani: "Articolo 18 è dignità. Renzi governa col mio 25%"
- Articolo 18, Renzi avverte il Pd: "La riforma dà diritti”. Da Brunetta “soccorso azzurro"
- Jobs act, sì da direzione Pd. Minoranza divisa. Renzi: "Pronto a confronto con i sindacati"
- Italy’s Renzi Wins Senate Confidence Vote on Labor Proposals
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- Roma, statali in piazza contro governo: Siamo in 100mila
- Jobs act, Camera approva testo. Fuori dall’Aula Fi, Lega, M5s e 40 deputati Pd
- Via libera al Senato, il Jobs act è legge: abolito l’articolo 18
- Auksjonerer bort regjeringens luksusbiler på Ebay
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- Renzi: “Abolizione Senato il 10 giugno”. Riforma Pa: “Beccare fannulloni”
- Renzi progetta un premierato forte e già lo pratica
- Riforme, Rodotà: “Avremo un governo padrone del sistema costituzionale
- Bertinotti: «L’ordine nuovo di Renzi. Autoritario, non di sinistra»
- Bertinotti: "Con Renzi la sinistra non esiste più..."
- La Consulta: il Porcellum è incostituzionale
- Patto del Nazareno, la clausola segreta di Renzi e Berlusconi: “Prodi mai al Colle”
- Legge elettorale, Renzi lancia 'Italicum'. Minoranza contro, ma proposta passa: neanche un no
- Il Senato approva l'Italicum, Renzi: "Il coraggio paga, andiamo avanti"
- Senato, Raffaele Cantone presidente dell’Autorità anticorruzione
- Autorità Nazionale Anticorruzione
- Scuola, Renzi: "Riforma non del premier o ministro, ma di tutti"
- Scuola: Renzi, non ennesima riforma ma patto educativo. Stop supplentite, scatti basati su merito
- Olimpiadi 2024, Renzi: "Ufficiale candidatura di Roma e dell'Italia"
- Renzi goes for gold with Rome’s Olympic bid
- M5s: "Il governo invia caccia contro l'Is senza autorizzazione". Fonti esercito: solo ricognizione
- Renzi: "Europa, stop austerità. Serve la crescita". E sul dissesto del territorio attacca le Regioni
- Gaza, Renzi: "L'Italia appoggia la proposta egiziana". Appello con Al-Sisi per il cessate il fuoco
- Elezioni europee: stravince Renzi
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- Matteo Renzi Angela Merkel: il vertice a Berlino
- Merkel Lauds Italy’s Renzi as Counterpoint to ECB Action
- Parte il tour europeo di Renzi, oggi da Hollande
- Asse Renzi – Hollande: “Cambiamo l'Europa”
- Europa, a Bologna nasce "l'asse latino", Renzi, Valls e Sanchez contro l'austerità
- Renzi says 'violence always loses', ANSA.it, 7 January 2015
- Charlie Hebdo: marcia a Parigi, Renzi: "Paura non ci ferma"
- Renzi: “Lavoro, serve più flessibilità” E incassa la benedizione di Cameron
- Renzi: investimenti stanno tornando
- Renzi a Londra incontra anche Blair. Cameron: «Matteo ha un piano ambizioso»
- Renzi alla City di Londra: "Sono qui a portare risultati riforme"
- Poroshenko to brief world leaders before NATO summit
- Vertice Nato su Ucraina e Isis Renzi "sostegno concreto a Kiev"
- Ue: Renzi, Mogherini candidata ufficiale a Lady Pesc
- Ue, lettera di Matteo Renzi a Juncker: “Mogherini candidata Pesc per l’Italia”
- Renzi 'sponsor' dell'Albania: "Allargare l'Ue o si perde una grande occasione
- Ucraina, sanzioni più dure per la Russia. E Renzi vede Yatseniuk
- Obama a Roma: “Emozionato dal Papa” A Renzi: fiducia nelle riforme italiane
- «Yes we can, vale oggi per l’Italia». L’incontro Renzi-Obama a Roma
- Obama: “Su Difesa si può risparmiare. Ma Ue spende poco rispetto a Usa”
- Renzi: «Obama per noi un modello
- cervelli italiani emigrati nella Silicon Valley: “Spiegheremo a Renzi come attirare i talenti
- Cena a Stanford per Renzi, poi un tour digitale nelle sedi di Twitter, Yahoo e Google
- Il Presidente Renzi durante il suo intervento alla Stanford University
- Renzi al summit di New York: "I cambiamenti climatici sono la sfida del nostro tempo
- Renzi a New York, incontro con i coniugi Clinton e l'assemblea dell'Onu
- Renzi a New York: Via al vertice Onu su clima e incontro con Ban Ki-moon
- Renzi: "Anche l'Italia nella coalizione anti-Isis"
- Renzi all’Onu: «Il Mediterraneo non sia un cimitero»
- Renzi: per il cambiamento pronti a sfidare i poteri forti. Nessun pasticcio sul Jobs Act
- Relations between Italy and Russia
- Renzi ammonisce la Russia: "Una violazione inacettabile"
- L'Italia: “Sovranità violata in Crimea, inaccettabile”
- Matteo Renzi alla Camera: "Illegittimo il referendum in Crimea"
- "G7 leaders warn Russia of fresh sanctions over Ukraine". 2014-06-05.
- Renzi al G7: "Chiusa fase austerity. Italia protagonista idee, non nei ruoli "
- Ucraina, Renzi a Putin: "Intollerabile escalation". Obama: "Gravi costi per Russia"
- Vertice Asem, a Milano 53 tra Capi di Stato e di Governo per il 10° summit tra Europa e Asia
- G20, Renzi:"L'Europa cambi gioco". E incassa il sostegno di Obama
- Renzi a Tunisi per la sua prima visita ufficiale all'estero: Mediterraneo al centro della presidenza italiana della Ue
- Renzi in Africa: visita in Mozambico, Congo-Brazzaville e Angola
- Renzi in Mozambico: «Da Eni un investimento da 50 miliardi». Descalzi assicura: «Non andremo via da Gela»
- Renzi in Africa. Obiettivo: risorse energetiche ed export
- Matteo Renzi in Mozambico: "Più investimenti nel Paese da parte dell'Italia"
- Renzi arrivato in Congo Brazaville
- Africa: Eni firma accordo in Congo, stasera Renzi in Angola
- Renzi fa squadra con Eni e va in Congo dal dittatore Nessou Nguesso
- Renzi in Angola, rafforzare cooperazione economica
- Renzi rafforza i rapporti economici con l'Angola. Ma a che prezzo?
- Italia-Africa: al via missione Renzi, tra politica e 'business'
- "Sudan: amb. in Italia, Meriam a Roma grazie a amicizia tra nostri paesi". Adnkronos (in Italian). Retrieved 1 September 2014.
- "Woman who faced death for faith is free". CNN website.
- Italy’s Renzi pivots to Africa for alternatives to Russian gas
- Renzi in Algeria: "Il Mediterraneo al centro della politica estera italiana"
- Renzi al Cairo: «Su Gaza, l’Italia appoggia la proposta egiziana»
- Renzi e' al Cairo, tra crisi di Gaza e rapporti bilaterali
- Gaza, Israele valuta ritiro unilaterale. Hamas: “Soldato ucciso da bombe”
- Iraq, Iran pronto ad agire contro l'Isis se verranno revocate le sanzioni sul nucleare: ma da Teheran arriva la smentita
- Renzi in Iraq: "L'Europa deve essere qui" "Vinceremo battaglia contro terrorismo"
- Visita di Renzi in Iraq
- Sì del Parlamento alle armi ai peshmerga. Renzi ai curdi: "Insieme batteremo i terroristi"
- New York: partecipazione al Vertice ONU
- Perché Renzi va in Turchia
- Medio Oriente, Netanyhau: "Dirò a Kerry e Renzi che Israele respinge il ritiro ai confini del 1967"
- Renzi rientrato dagli Emirati Arabi
- Gen. Shaikh Mohammed receives Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi
- Matteo Renzi incontra Shinzo Abe: Tokyo cerca “solidarietà” contro Pechino
- Storica visita di Renzi in Vietnam, prima volta di un premier italiano
- Renzi ad Hanoi: obiettivo interscambio da 5 miliardi di dollari
- Renzi e la missione Asia, tappa ad Hanoi
- Renzi in Vietnam, la prima volta di premier italiano
- Renzi in Vietnam, le foto anche sui social network
- Renzi-Xi Jinping, un altro idillio
- Renzi in Cina: dobbiamo aprirci di più
- Renzi incontra Xi Jiping: costruiamo nuove occasioni di collaborazione
- Italia- Cina, Renzi: "20 accordi per oltre 8 miliardi"
- Mr. Renzi va in Kazakistan
- Cosa è andato a fare Renzi in Kazakistan
- Turkmenistan: Renzi, con Ashgabat "amicizia" anche oltre il gas
- Bilaterale Renzi-Abbott precede il G20
- Renzi è il nuovo sindaco. Vince con il 60 per cento.
- Milano, sfida Renzi-Cuperlo anteprima del congresso pd
- Primarie PD 2013
- Definitive results in elezioni.interno.it.
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- Nomine Ue, Renzi la spunta: Mogherini è Alto Rappresentante agli esteri
- Primarie Pd, Fassina contro Renzi: copia le proposte di Bersani
- Matteo Renzi: Il matriomonio è per tutti, o quasi
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- Tony Blair: "Renzi mio erede, con la sua corsa alle riforme cambierà l'Italia"
- Intervista a Matteo Renzi di Claudio Sardo
- Irpef, Imu e la Terza via di Gutgeld, “guru” economico di Renzi
- Renzi: la presidenza Clinton ha cambiato l'America ed è punto di riferimento per la sinistra riformista mondiale
- Pd, Civati a Guerini e Renzi: ‘No a ricatti, c’è problema di democrazia interna’
- Cosa prevede la riforma del senato annunciata da Matteo Renzi
- Pansa: attenti a Renzi, aspirante dittatore
- Riforme, Beppe Grillo attacca: "Si va verso la dittatura. Mussolini meno sfacciato di Napolitano-Renzi-Berlusconi"
- Renzi’s Father Investigated for Fraudulent Bankruptcy
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- "Italy’s young leader captures politics of Pope Francis". Boston Globe. Retrieved 3 June 2014.
- Fiorentina: Renzi-Della Valle scatenati in tribuna.
- House of Cards, l’autore a Renzi: “Il mio libro non è un manuale di istruzioni”
- Doppia vittoria in casa Renzi. La sorella Benedetta è assessore a Castenaso
- Tiziano, il papà di Matteo con un passato nella Dc e un reddito da 5mila euro
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- Official website of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers (Italian)
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- Renzi on his party's website (Italian)
|President of Florence Province
|Mayor of Florence
|Prime Minister of Italy
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|Secretary of the Democratic Party
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as President of the Chamber of Deputies
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as President of the Council of Ministers
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