Populars (Italy, 2008)

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The Populars (Popolari), short name of Populars for the Constituent Assembly of the Centre (Popolari per la Costituente di Centro),[1][2] was a Christian-democratic political party in Italy active in Campania, under the leadership of Ciriaco De Mita.

The party took different names at the provincial level. In the province of Avellino, De Mita's heartland, the party was called Coordination Populars – Daisy for the Constituent Assembly of the Centre (Coordinamento Popolari – Margherita per la Costituente di Centro),[3][4] while the group in the provincial council was named The Populars – The Daisy for the Constituent Assembly of the Centre (I Popolari – La Margherita per la Costituente di Centro).[5][6] The party was thus known also as Populars–Daisy (Popolari–Margherita),[7] sometimes even nationally.[8] In the province of Caserta the party was instead called Populars and Democrats for the Constituent Assembly of the Centre (Popolari e Democratici per la Costituente di Centro) or, simply, Populars and Democrats (Popolari e Democratici).[9][10][11] "Populars" and "Daisy" were references to the Italian People's Party (PPI) and Democracy is Freedom – The Daisy (DL), De Mita's latter parties.

De Mita, a former leader of Christian Democracy, Prime Minister and finally leading member of the PPI and DL, joined the Democratic Party in 2007. However, in early 2008 he left that party over disagreements with Walter Veltroni[12] and stood as a candidate for the Union of the Centre (UdC) for the Senate in the 2008 general election. In the event he failed election, but, one year later, he managed to win a seat in the European Parliament for the UdC in the Southern constituency.[13]

The Populars were one of the main constituent parties of the UdC, along with the Union of Christian and Centre Democrats and the White Rose.[8]

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