Next Italian general election

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Next Italian general election
2013 ←
No later than
23 May 2018[1]

All 630 seats of the Chamber of Deputies
and all elective 315 seats of the Senate of the Republic
  Matteo Renzi Portrait.png Beppe Grillo 3.jpg Berlusconi-2010-1.jpg
Leader Matteo Renzi Beppe Grillo Silvio Berlusconi
Party Democratic Party Five Star Movement Forza Italia
Leader since 15 December 2013 4 October 2009 18 January 1994
Last election 297 C / 111 S,
109 C / 54 S,
98 C / 98 S,
Current seats 310 C / 114 S 91 C / 36 S 70 C / 66 S

  Angelino Alfano daticamera.jpg Nicola Vendola daticamera.jpg Matteo Salvini 2.jpg
Leader Angelino Alfano Nichi Vendola Matteo Salvini
Party New Centre-Right Left Ecology Freedom Lega Nord
Leader since 15 November 2013 24 October 2010 15 December 2013
Last election new party 37 C / 7 S,
18 C / 18 S,
Current seats 27 C / 31 S 26 C / 7 S 15 C / 12 S

Incumbent Prime Minister

Matteo Renzi
Democratic Party

The next Italian general election is due to be held in or before 2018. The election will be called following the dissolution or expiry of the current Parliament.

Under the current Constitution, voters would elect 630 members of the Chamber of Deputies and 315 members of the Senate of the Republic for the 18th Parliament of Italy, but several major parties have committed to constitutional changes which would replace the Senate with a smaller, indirectly elected body.[2]


In the 2013 general election, neither of the two main coalitions, the centre-right led by Silvio Berlusconi and the centre-left Italy. Common Good led by Pier Luigi Bersani, won an outright majority in both houses of the Parliament, due to the good result obtained by a new third force, the Five Star Movement (M5S).

After various failed attempts by Bersani, who was also secretary and prime-ministerial candidate of the Democratic Party (PD), to form a government including or having the support of the M5S, President Giorgio Napolitano gave Enrico Letta, Bersani's deputy within the PD, the task of forming a government. The cabinet was composed of members of the PD, Berlusconi's The People of Freedom (PdL) – replaced by New Centre-Right (NCD) in November 2013 –, Civic Choice (SC), the Union of the Centre (UdC), one member of the Italian Radicals and three non-party independents.[3]

Following tensions with his party and its new secretary Matteo Renzi, in February 2014 Letta resigned from Prime Minister and was replaced by Renzi himself, who formed a cabinet composed of the identical coalition supporting Letta's government.[4] Renzi's position at the helm of the party and the government was strengthened by the Democrats' strong showing in the 2014 European Parliament election and the election of Sergio Mattarella, a fellow Democrat, in the 2015 presidential election.

In 2014–15 opinion polls (see below) have registered the PD's strength and a steady rise of Lega Nord (LN) under Matteo Salvini, who launched a bid to become the leader of a much fractured centre-right, while emphasizing a decline of Forza Italia, the party which replaced the PdL, and the M5S, and the virtual disappearance of SC.

New electoral system[edit]

A new electoral law, known as Italicum, was approved on 4 May 2015.[5]

The electoral system is based on party-lists representation and will be applicable only to the Chamber of Deputies from 1 July 2016.

According to this new system, parties are not allowed to team up or form coalitions. A run-off ballot between the two largest parties decides which party gets a majority bonus, which should make sure the winning party's leader becomes prime minister with a governing majority. The majority bonus is assigned without a run-off only if the largest party reaches 40% in the first round. The country is divided into 20 electoral districts and these are subdivided into a total of 100 constituencies, each electing about 6 deputies. Voters can pick up a party list as well as the candidates, but not the ones at the top of the slates, who are automatically elected if their party wins a seat in their constituency. Each party must present its list in alternating gender order, and voter preferences must be given to a man and a woman in the interests of gender equity. An amendment, known as the "Erasmus amendment", made sure that Italian students studying abroad via the Erasmus Programme can vote.

Parties and leaders[edit]

This is a list of the parties (and their respective leaders) which would likely participate in the election.

Party Ideology Leader
Five Star Movement (M5S) Populism, Anti-establishment, Euroscepticism Beppe Grillo
Democratic Party (PD) Social democracy, Christian left Matteo Renzi
Forza Italia (FI) Liberal conservatism, Christian democracy Silvio Berlusconi
Civic Choice (SC) Liberalism, Centrism Enrico Zanetti
Lega Nord (LN) Regionalism, Populism, Euroscepticism Matteo Salvini
Us with Salvini (NcS) Populism, Protectionism, Euroscepticism
Left Ecology Freedom (SEL) Democratic socialism, Eco-socialism Nichi Vendola
Brothers of Italy (FdI) National conservatism, Nationalism, Euroscepticism Giorgia Meloni
Union of the Centre (UdC) Christian democracy, Social conservatism Pier Ferdinando Casini
New Centre-Right (NCD) Conservatism, Christian democracy Angelino Alfano
Communist Refoundation Party (PRC) Communism, Euroscepticism Paolo Ferrero

Opinion polling[edit]

15-day average trend line of poll results from February 2013 to the present day, with each line corresponding to a political party.


  1. ^ Italian Constitution, Art.61
  2. ^ "Italian parties reach deal on Senate reform". Reuters. June 21, 2014. Retrieved June 25, 2014. 
  3. ^ Dionisi, Brenda (May 9, 2013). "It's a governissimo!". The Florentine. Retrieved September 24, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Renzi: con 47, 8 anni di media, è il governo più giovane di sempre". Corriere Della Sera. 21 February 2014. Retrieved 23 February 2014. 
  5. ^ Major election reform in Italy as parliament approves new law. The Telegraph. Retrieved 9 May 2015.