David Sassoli

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David Sassoli
Official portrait of David Sassoli, president of the European Parliament.jpg
Official portrait, 2019
President of the European Parliament
Assumed office
3 July 2019
Vice PresidentMairead McGuinness
Roberta Metsola
Preceded byAntonio Tajani
Member of the European Parliament
for Central Italy
Assumed office
14 July 2009
Personal details
David Maria Sassoli

(1956-05-30) 30 May 1956 (age 65)
Florence, Italy
Political partyDemocratic Party
Other political
Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats
EducationUniversity of Florence

David Maria Sassoli (Italian pronunciation: [sasˈsɔːli]; born 30 May 1956) is an Italian politician and journalist. He has been member of the European Parliament since 2009,[1] and was elected its President on 3 July 2019.[2]

Journalistic career[edit]

David Sassoli was born in Florence in 1956. He studied at the department of political science at the University of Rome.[citation needed]

He began his journalistic career at the newspaper Il Tempo in Rome, before collaborating with various newspapers and ASCA (news agency). In 1985, he moved to the Roman editorial office of the daily Il Giorno, where he followed the main political and news events for seven years. During this period, he was a direct witness to fundamental historical events, such as the fall of the Berlin Wall on November 9, 1989. He has been enrolled in the register of professional journalists since 3 July 1986.

In 1992 he became news reporter for TG3 and in the same period he collaborated with Michele Santoro for some TV programs such as "Il rosso e il nero" ("The Red and the Black") and "Tempo reale" ("Real Time"). In 1996, he hosted the program "Cronaca in diretta" ("Live coverage"). After a few years, he was appointed as anchorman of TG1, where he became one of the most notable and popular journalists in the country.[3] In 2007, when Gianni Riotta was appointed new director of TG1, Sassoli became his deputy director.[4] ' Sassoli is also a 'supporter' of "Articolo 21, liberi di..." ("Article 21, free to..."), an Italian association which includes journalist, writers, directors and lawyers, with the aim of promoting freedom of expression.[5]

Political career[edit]

David Sassoli in 2010.

In 2009, Sassoli left his journalistic career to enter politics, becoming a member of the centre-left Democratic Party (PD) and running in the 2009 European Parliament election, for the Central Italy district. On 7 June, he was elected member of the EP with 412,502 personal preferences,[6] becoming the most-voted candidate in his constituency.[7] From 2009 to 2014, he served as PD's delegation leader in the Parliament.

On 9 October 2012, Sassoli announced his candidacy in the primaries for the centre-left's candidate as new mayor of Rome in the 2013 municipal election. He ended up in second place with 28% of votes, behind Senator Ignazio Marino, who got 55%, and ahead of former Minister of Communications Paolo Gentiloni. Marino would be later elected mayor, defeating the right-wing incumbent, Gianni Alemanno.[8]

In the European Parliament election of 2014, Sassoli was re-elected to the European Parliament, with 206,170 preferences.[9] The election was characterized by a strong showing of his Democratic Party, which gained 41% of votes.[10]

On 1 July 2014 Sassoli was elected Vice-President of the European Parliament with 393 votes, making him the second most voted Socialist candidate.[11][12] In addition to his committee assignments, he is a member of the European Parliament Intergroup on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights.[13]

President of the European Parliament[edit]

In the 2019 European Parliament election in Italy, Sassoli was re-elected to the European Parliament, with 128,533 votes.[14] On 2 July 2019, he was proposed by the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D) as the new President of the European Parliament.[15] On the following day, Sassoli was elected President by the assembly with 345 votes in favor, succeeding Antonio Tajani.[16] He is the seventh Italian to hold the office.

In his acceptance speech, Sassoli talked about the European project as a dream of peace and democracy. He said European citizens showed that they still believed in the project and talked about being proud of European diversity.[17] He also added that "Europe will be stronger only with a Parliament which plays a more important role".[18]

Moreover, in his first public act as newly elected President, Sassoli decided to pay tribute to all the victims of terrorism in Europe, attending one of the sites of the 2016 Brussels bombings to commemorate the victims at Maalbeek/Maelbeek metro station. He said: "We must pay tribute to the victims in the capital of Europe. We must commemorate the European citizens who were victims of these attacks. This is a tribute to all the victims of terrorism. I wanted to start my time as President with this symbolic act."[19]

On 19 December 2019 Sassoli asked for the liberation of Oriol Junqueras, former vice president of Catalonia and recently elected MEP, who was imprisoned after the 2017 Spanish constitutional crisis. As a member of the European Parliament, Junqueras benefits from parliamentary immunity. Sassoli urged the Spanish authorities to comply with the European Parliament ruling.[20]

In June 2020, he signed the international appeal in favour of the so-called purple economy (“Towards a cultural renaissance of the economy”), published in Corriere della Sera,[21] El País[22] and Le Monde.[23]

In April 2021, Sassoli was included in a list of eight public officials that were banned by Russia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs from entering the country in retaliation for EU sanctions on Russians.[24]

Personal life[edit]

Sassoli is married to Alessandra Vittorini, with whom he had two children, Giulio and Livia.[25] He is a fan of ACF Fiorentina, the football team of his hometown.

Sassoli is an active member of Articolo 21, liberi di... ("Article 21, free to..."),[citation needed] an Italian association, founded on 27 February 2001, which included journalists, writers, directors and lawyers, with the aim of promoting the Constitutional principle of freedom of expression.

Electoral history[edit]

Election House Constituency Party Votes Result
2009 European Parliament Central Italy PD 405,967 checkY Elected
2014 European Parliament Central Italy PD 206,557 checkY Elected
2019 European Parliament Central Italy PD 128,572 checkY Elected


  1. ^ "Home | David Maria SASSOLI | MEPs | European Parliament". European Parliament. Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  2. ^ Baume, Maïa de La (3 July 2019). "David Sassoli elected European Parliament president". POLITICO. Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  3. ^ "David Sassoli eletto presidente dell'Europarlamento al 2° scrutinio". L'HuffPost (in Italian). 3 July 2019. Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  4. ^ "David Sassoli – biografia Raiuno Raidue". 22 June 2008. Archived from the original on 22 June 2008. Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  5. ^ La Repubblica (4 July 2019). "David Sassoli". biografieonline.it (in Italian). Retrieved 17 November 2021.
  6. ^ "Berlusconi fallisce l'obiettivo tre milioni Nell'Idv De Magistris batte Di Pietro". La Repubblica. Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  7. ^ "Europee: le preferenze raccolte dai candidati del Pd". Sky TG24. Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  8. ^ "Elezioni Comunali 2013, Liste e risultati: Roma". La Repubblica. 10 June 2013. Retrieved 10 June 2013.
  9. ^ "Partito Democratico – Liste e candidati – Italia – Elezioni Europee – 25 maggio 2014". la Repubblica (in Italian). Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  10. ^ "Renzi stravince il "derby" con Grillo Pd al 40,8%, M5S 20 punti indietro". Corriere della Sera (in Italian). 25 May 2014. Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  11. ^ "I nuovi vicepresidenti del Parlamento europeo". Il Post (in Italian). 2 July 2014. Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  12. ^ "Sassoli David". Eurodeputatipd.eu (in Italian). Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  13. ^ Members European Parliament Intergroup on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights.
  14. ^ "Speciale Elezioni Ue: liste, candidati ed eletti in Italia". la Repubblica. Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  15. ^ "Parlamento Ue, in corso la votazione. Sassoli in pole per la presidenza". Il Sole 24 ORE (in Italian). Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  16. ^ "Italian chosen as European Parliament president". BBC. 3 July 2019. Retrieved 3 July 2019.
  17. ^ "Who is the new European Parliament president David-Maria Sassoli?". euronews.com. 3 July 2019. Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  18. ^ "European Parliament: Who is David Sassoli". Deutsche Welle. 3 July 2019. Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  19. ^ "EP President Sassoli paid tribute to victims of terrorism in Europe | News | European Parliament". European Parliament. 7 May 2019. Retrieved 13 July 2019.
  20. ^ "Junqueras immunity: European Parliament President calls on Spanish authorities to comply ruling". euronews. 19 December 2019.
  21. ^ "Per un rinascimento culturale dell'economia". Corriere della Sera (in Italian). 7 June 2020. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  22. ^ "Por un renacimiento cultural de la economía". El País (in Spanish). 7 June 2020. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  23. ^ "En dépit de son importance croissante, le culturel n'a pas suffisamment été pensé comme un écosystème". Le Monde (in French). 7 June 2020. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  24. ^ Andrew Gray (April 30, 2021), Russia bans top EU officials in retaliation for sanctions Politico Europe.
  25. ^ "Biografia di David Sassoli". www.cinquantamila.it.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by President of the European Parliament