Vincenzo De Luca

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Vincenzo De Luca
Vincenzo De Luca crop.jpg
15th President of Campania
Assumed office
18 June 2015
Preceded byStefano Caldoro
Mayor of Salerno
In office
15 June 2006 – 3 February 2015
Preceded byMario De Biase
Succeeded byVincenzo Napoli
In office
6 December 1993 – 15 May 2001
Preceded byMario Laurino
Succeeded byMario De Biase
In office
22 May 1993 – 2 July 1993
Preceded byVincenzo Giordano
Succeeded byAntonio Lattarulo
Member of the Chamber of Deputies
In office
30 May 2001 – 28 April 2008
ConstituencyCampania II
Personal details
Born (1949-05-08) 8 May 1949 (age 71)
Ruvo del Monte, Italy
Political partyPCI (before 1991)
PDS (1991–1998)
DS (1998–2007)
PD (2007–present)
Rosa Zampetti
(m. 1979; div. 2008)
Domestic partnerMaria Maddalena Cantisani

Vincenzo De Luca (born 8 May 1949) is an Italian politician, member of the Democratic Party, currently serving as President of the Campania region since 18 June 2015.[1] De Luca also served as Mayor of Salerno for more than 17 years, becoming one of the longest serving mayors in Italy.[2][3]

De Luca has often been described as a populist politician and became known for his controversial statements.[4][5] He is nicknamed Lo Sceriffo ("The Sheriff"), due to his authoritarian style,[6] but also Don Vicienzo.[7]

Early life[edit]

De Luca was born in 1949 in Ruvo del Monte, in the province of Potenza, in a lower middle-class family. He then moved to Salerno at an early age alongside his family.[8]

After obtaining a high school diploma at the Liceo classico Torquato Tasso of Salerno, he graduated in philosophy at the University of Salerno. Before entering in politics, he work as a philosophy teacher in high schools.[9]

In 1979, he married Rosa Zampetti, a sociologist, from who he had two sons Piero and Roberto, who are both involved in politics. Piero is serving as a member of the Chamber of Deputies, while Roberto served as a regional responsible for economy in the Democratic Party of Campania.[10]

Political career[edit]

During the 1970s, De Luca became a member of the Italian Communist Party (PCI), at the time led by Enrico Berlinguer. In 1975, after having been head of the party's provincial organization, he was appointed as provincial secretary, leading the federation for a decade. In those years, he was jokingly nicknamed "The Professor" (O Professore) because of his job as a philosophy teacher.[11] Due to his authoritarian style, De Luca was also nicknamed "Pol Pot", just like the Cambodian communist dictator.[12]

Mayor of Salerno[edit]

De Luca was elected to the Salerno city council in 1990, holding the posts of both Commissioner of Public works and Deputy Mayor. In the spring of 1993, he was promoted to the office of mayor due to the resignation of Vincent Giordano, who found himself involved in the ongoing Tangentopoli investigation. A month later, the resignation of the majority of councilors resulted in the dissolution of the municipal council. The subsequent elections marked a significant success of De Luca's "Progressive List for Salerno", with 57.8% of votes in a second ballot against Giuseppe Acocella, of the centre-right coalition.

On 16 November 1997, De Luca was re-elected mayor in the first round with 71.3% of the vote.[13]

Member of the Chamber of Deputies[edit]

Not being able to reapply for a third term as mayor, De Luca resigned in order to run for a parliamentary seat in the 2001 general election;[14] on 31 May 2001 he was elected to the Chamber of Deputies with a percentage of 55.4% of the votes, the highest one obtained by a candidate of The Olive Tree coalition in Southern Italy.[15]

After the 2006 general election, De Luca was re-elected at the Chamber of Deputies and was appointed as a member of the Agriculture Commission.[16]

Mayor of Salerno again[edit]

De Luca with President Giorgio Napolitano in 2010.

During the 2006 local elections, De Luca was re-elected as Mayor of Salerno for a third term after a run-off election, gaining 56.9% of the ballots. He ran as the candidate of the center-left list "Progressives for Salerno", in opposition to the MEP Alfonso Andria, supported by The Daisy, and some members of the Democrats of the Left, which were against De Luca's candidacy, due to his strong dissent towards Democrat President of Campania Antonio Bassolino.

In the general election of April 2008 he was unable to run also due to the incompatibility provided by law between the offices of member of the parliament and mayor of a city with more than 15,000 inhabitants. While in office, De Luca was one of the most popular mayor in Italy.[17]

On 30 January 2010 De Luca announced his candidacy to become President of Campania in the March regional election. However, his centre-right rival Stefano Caldoro, a former minister and leader of the New PSI (merged into The People of Freedom in 2009) won by a convincing margin, thanks to a 20% swing in favor of the centre-right, which included the Union of the Centre led by Ciriaco De Mita, an influential former leader of Christian Democracy.[18]

In 2011 De Luca was re-elected for a fourth term as Mayor of Salerno with 74.42% of votes.[19]

President of Campania[edit]

On 31 May 2015, De Luca was elected President of Campania in the regional election, with 41% of the votes, defeating incumbent governor Stefano Caldoro with a margin of 66,000 votes.[20] He has been then reconfirmed in his position at the 2020 regional elections, which he won with 68% of the votes.


  1. ^ "Vincenzo De Luca". Regione Campania (in Italian). Retrieved 5 September 2015.
  2. ^ "Mayor of the Month for March 2013". City Mayors (in Italian). 1 March 2013. Retrieved 5 September 2015.
  3. ^ The problem of incompatibility, latent since the establishment of the Government Letta, could explode on the situation of the Undersecretary for transport mayor of Salerno: Buonomo, Giampiero (2014). "Incompatibilità parlamentari: l'Italia prende in giro l'Europa e la Consulta". L'Ago e Il Filo Edizione Online.  – via Questia (subscription required)
  4. ^ Cacciari demolisce De Luca: “Un populista di sinistra”
  5. ^ Il granduca Vincenzo De Luca, oratoria a effetti speciali tra la ragione e il lanciafiamme, Corriere della Sera
  6. ^ Coronavirus, lo sceriffo De Luca scatena l'ironia dei social: è il supereroe del web, Il Mattino
  7. ^ Don Vicienzo da sceriffo a Duce, Il Fatto Quotidiano
  8. ^ Chi è Vincenzo De Luca, il presidente della Regione Campania
  9. ^ Vincenzo De Luca: biografia del Presidente della Regione Campania, The Italian Times
  10. ^ Profilo di Piero De Luca
  11. ^ Figli, compagna e politica, se per De Luca la famiglia è potere
  12. ^ Lo sceriffo di Salerno. Biografia non autorizzata di Vincenzo De Luca
  13. ^ Elezioni comunali a Salerno del 1997, Ministero dell'Interno
  14. ^ Vincenzo De Luca, Camera dei Deputati – XIV Legislatura
  15. ^ Comune di Salerno. Biografia
  16. ^ Vincenzo De Luca, Camera dei Deputati – XV Legislatura
  17. ^ Governance Poll: i Sindaci
  18. ^ Elezioni amministrative, la Campania torna al centrodestra
  19. ^ Elezioni amministrative 2011
  20. ^ Regionali Campania 2015: De Luca vince, ora nodo legge Severino