Politics of Lombardy

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politics and government of
Lombardy

The Politics of Lombardy, Italy, takes place in a framework of a semi-presidential representative democracy, whereby the President of the Region is the head of government, and of a pluriform multi-party system. Legislative power is vested in the Regional Council of Lombardy, while executive power is exercised by the Regional Government led by the President, who is directly elected by the people. The current Statute is in force since 2008. Roberto Formigoni has been President since 1995.

Although many local authorities of Lombardy, as all Italy, were ruled the Liberal-conservative coalition that governed the country prior to the rise of Fascism, the region was also the birthplace of the Italian Labour Party, forerunner of the Italian Socialist Party and its eastern and northern provinces were an early stronghold of the Italian People's Party. In the 1924 general election, which led Italy to dictatorship, Lombardy was one of the few regions which did not return an absolute majority to the National Fascist Party during the which led Italy to dictatorship. After World War II Lombardy became a stronghold of the Christian Democracy, since the 1980s in association with the Italian Socialist Party, which was especially strong in Milan.[1]

Traditionally, Lombardy gives centrist results during elections, reflecting its strong middle class. The Communists and their successors (the Democratic Party of the Left, the Democrats of the Left and the present-day Democratic Party) never won in the region.[1] In the 1980s Lombardy saw the organization of a new regionalist party, Lega Lombarda (later Lega Nord), that would have played a major role in Italian politics since the early 1990s. Lombardy is now a stronghold of the centre-right coalition between The People of Freedom, the largest party in the region, founded by Lombard entrepreneur Silvio Berlusconi, and Lega Nord. The coalition has governed the region since 1995, although Lega Nord joined the regional government only in 2000.

Legislative branch[edit]

The Regional Council of Lombardy is composed of 80 members. 64 councillors are elected in provincial constituencies by proportional representation using the largest remainder method with a Droop quota and open lists, while 16 councillors (elected in a general ticket) come from a "regional list", including the President-elect. One seat is reserved for the candidate who comes second. If a coalition wins more than 50% of the total seats in the Council with PR, as happened during the 2000 election, only 8 candidates from the regional list will be chosen and the number of those elected in provincial constituencies will be 72. If the winning coalition receives less than 50% of votes, as happened during the 1995 election, special seats are added to the Council to ensure a large majority for the President's coalition.[2][3][4]

The Council is elected for a five-year term, but, if the President suffers a vote of no confidence, resigns or dies, under the simul stabunt, simul cadent prevision introduced in 1999 (literally they will stand together or they will fall together), also the Council is dissolved and a snap election is called.[5][6]

2013–2018 composition[edit]

Distribution of Seats in the Regional Council
Political Group 2013 Now
The People of Freedom 19 19
Democratic Party 17 17
Lega LombardaLega Nord 15 15
Maroni List 11 11
Five Star Movement 9 9
Ambrosoli List 4 4
Brothers of Italy 2 2
Pensioners' Party 1 1

Source: Regional Council of Lombardy

Executive branch[edit]

The Regional Cabinet (Giunta Regionale) is presided by the President of the Region (Presidente della Regione), who is elected for a five-year term, and is currently composed by 16 members: the President and 15 regional assessors (Assessori, literally "aldermen"), including a Vice President (Vice Presidente), while 4 under-secretaries (Sottosegretari) help the President but have not right of vote when the cabinet meets.[7]

2013–2018 composition[edit]

Party Members
Lega Nord President and 7 assessors
The People of Freedom 7 assessors
Brothers of Italy 1 assessor

List of Presidents[edit]

Presidents of Lombardy
President Party Term Legislature
1 Pietro Bassetti DC 1970–1974 I Legislature
2 Cesare Golfari DC 1974–1979 I–II Legislatures
3 Giuseppe Guzzetti DC 1979–1987 II–III–IV Legislatures
4 Bruno Tabacci DC 1987–1989 IV Legislature
5 Giuseppe Giovenzana DC 1989–1992 IV–V Legislatures
6 Fiorella Ghilardotti PDS 1992–1994 V Legislature
7 Paolo Arrigoni LN 1994–1995 V Legislature
8 Roberto Formigoni CDU/CDL/FI/PDL 1995–2013 VI–VII–VIII–IX Legislatures
9 Roberto Maroni LN 2013–present X Legislature

The current President of Lombardy is Roberto Maroni, who is serving for his first term after winning the 2013 regional election.

Local government[edit]

Provinces[edit]

Lombardy is divided in twelve provinces, which are a traditional form of local administration in the region, the first ones being yet established under Habsburg rule by Maria Theresa of Austria in the 18th century. Socialist and Christian-democratic ideas had an early diffusion in quite all the provinces around World War I. After the Fascist parenthesis, left-wing parties found their strongholds in south-eastern agricultural provinces near Emilia, especially in the Province of Mantua, while Christian Democracy obtained high scores in the northern mountainous part of the Region, where nowadays Lega LombardaLega Nord gets a strong backing. The city of Milan is one of major national strongholds of The People of Freedom, although in the last municipal election the left-wing prevailed.

Province Inhabitants established President Party Election
Milan 3,156,694 1754 Guido Podestà The People of Freedom 2009
Brescia 1,256,025 1797 Daniele Molgora Lega Lombarda 2009
Bergamo 1,098,740 1797 Ettore Pirovano Lega Lombarda 2009
Varese 883,285 1927 Dario Galli, commissioner Lega Lombarda 2007
Monza and Brianza 849,636 2009 Dario Allevi The People of Freedom 2009
Como 598,988 1786 Leonardo Carioni, commissioner Lega Lombarda 2007
Pavia 548,307 1786 Daniele Bosone Democratic Party 2011
Mantua 415,442 1797 Alessandro Pastacci Democratic Party 2011
Cremona 363,606 1786 Massimiliano Salini The People of Freedom 2009
Lecco 340,167 1995 Daniele Nava The People of Freedom 2009
Lodi 227,665 1995 Pietro Foroni Lega Lombarda 2009
Sondrio 183,169 1797 Massimo Sertori Lega Lombarda 2009

Municipalities[edit]

Lombardy is also divided in 1,546 comuni (municipalities), which have even more history, having been established in the Middle Ages when they were the main places of government. 15 comuni have more than 50,000 inhabitants, most of which are ruled by the centre-left.

Municipality Inhabitants Mayor Party Election
Milan 1,324,110 Giuliano Pisapia Left Ecology Freedom 2011
Brescia 193,879 Emilio Del Bono Democratic Party 2013
Monza 122,712 Roberto Scanagatti Democratic Party 2012
Bergamo 119,551 Franco Tentorio The People of Freedom 2009
Como 85,263 Mario Lucini Democratic Party 2012
Busto Arsizio 81,760 Gianluigi Farioli The People of Freedom 2011
Varese 81,579 Attilio Fontana Lega Lombarda 2011
Sesto San Giovanni 81,130 Monica Chittò Democratic Party 2012
Cinisello Balsamo 74,150 Daniela Gasparini Democratic Party 2009
Cremona 72,147 Oreste Perri The People of Freedom 2009
Pavia 71,142 Alessandro Cattaneo The People of Freedom 2009
Vigevano 63,700 Andrea Sala Lega Lombarda 2010
Legnano 59,147 Alberto Centinaio Democratic Party 2012
Gallarate 51,751 Edoardo Guenzani Democratic Party 2011
Rho 50,686 Pietro Romano Democratic Party 2011

Parties and elections[edit]

Last regional election[edit]

In the last regional election, which took place on 24–25 February 2013, Roberto Maroni of Lega LombardaLega Nord was elected President of Lombardy with the support of The People of Freedom. The election was the first snap election in Lombard political history and the first one paired with a senatorial election.


Candidates Regional candidates Provincial lists Total
votes % seats Parties votes % swing seats party group
Roberto Maroni 2,456,921 42.8 1 The People of Freedom 904,742 16.7 Decrease15.1 19 19 49
Lega LombardaLega Nord 700,907 13.0 Decrease13.2 15 16
Maroni President list 552,863 10.2 new 11 11
Brothers of Italy 83,810 1.6 new 2 2
Pensioners' Party 50,843 0.9 Decrease0.7 1 1
Others of centre-right[8] 35,644 0.7 Increase0.5 - -
Umberto Ambrosoli 2,194,169 38.2 1 Democratic Party 1,369,440 25.3 Increase2.4 17 17 22
Civic Pact (Ambrosoli list) 380,241 7.0 new 4 5
Others of centre-left[9] 265,429 4.9 Decrease3.9 - -
Silvana Carcano 782,007 13.6 - Five Star Movement 775,211 14.3 Increase12.0 9 9 9
Gabriele Albertini 236,597 4.1 - Civic Choice 133,435 2.5 new - - -
Union of the Centre 85,721 1.6 Decrease2.2 - -
Carlo Pinardi 68,133 1.2 - Stop the Decline 68,469 1.3 new - - -
Total candidates 5,737,827 100.0 2 Total parties 5,406,755 100.0 = 78 80 80

Source: Region Lombardy

List of previous regional elections[edit]

Last general election in Lombardy[edit]

Chamber of Deputies[edit]

e • d 
Coalitions leaders votes votes (%) seats Parties votes votes (%) seats
Silvio Berlusconi 3,387,180 55.1 62 The People of Freedom 2,059,231 33.5 37
Lega Nord 1,327,949 21.6 25
Walter Veltroni 1,972,981 32.1 32 Democratic Party 1,727,006 28.1 28
Italy of Values 245,975 4.0 4
Pier Ferdinando Casini 261,293 4.3 5 Union of the Centre 261,293 4.3 5
Fausto Bertinotti 180,621 2.9 - The Left – The Rainbow 180,621 2.9 -
Daniela Santanchè 130,324 2.1 - The Right 130,324 2.1 -
Enrico Boselli 37,349 0.6 - Socialist Party 37,349 0.6 -
Marco Ferrando 33,646 0.5 - Workers' Communist Party 33,646 0.5 -
Giuliano Ferrara 28,439 0.5 - Abortion? No, thanks 28,439 0.5 -
Others 110,214 1.8 - Others 110,214 1.8 -
Total coalitions 6,142,028 100.0 98 Total parties 6,142,028 100.0 98

Source: Ministry of the Interior

Senate[edit]

e • d 
Coalitions leaders votes votes (%) seats Parties votes votes (%) swing seats change
Silvio Berlusconi 3,139,694 55.1 30 The People of Freedom 1,959,681 34.4 -3.6 19 0
Lega Nord 1,180,013 20.7 +9.6 11 +6
Walter Veltroni 1,823,835 32.0 17 Democratic Party 1,607,928 28.2 +5.8 15 +2
Italy of Values 215,907 3.8 +1.2 2 +2
Pier Ferdinando Casini 240,481 4.2 - Union of the Centre 240,481 4.2 -1.7 - -3
Fausto Bertinotti 183,061 3.2 - The Left – The Rainbow 183,061 3.2 -8.6 - -7
Daniela Santanchè 93,077 1.6 - The Right 93,077 1.6 +0.5 - -
Eva Rossi 45,622 0.8 - Lega Alleanza Lombarda 45,622 0.8 -0.8 - -
Enrico Boselli 30,745 0.5 - Socialist Party 30,745 0.5 -1.7 - -
Marco Ferrando 27,141 0.5 - Workers' Communist Party 27,141 0.5 +0.5 - -
Renzo Rabellino 25,866 0.5 - Beppe Grillo's Movement 25,866 0.5 +0.5 - -
Others 86,632 1.5 - Others 86,632 1.5 -1.7 - -
Total coalitions 5,696,154 100.0 47 Total parties 5,696,154 100.0 = 47 =

Source: Ministry of the Interior

References[edit]

External links[edit]