Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Is This Man a Leftie?

What does it mean that Mario Monti, if he chooses to run for premier as head of a list, will draw two thirds of his votes, according to current polls, from the center-left? Is it just that the center-left gathers a certain sober, anti-Berlusconi, no-nonsense voter for whom Monti's probity is greater than Bersani's? Or has Bersani bent so far in the direction of supporting Monti, austerity 'reforms' and all, that the Italian center-left and what the French call 'social-liberalisme' are indistinguishable?

 In any case this curious fact doesn't really clarify the shape of the coming election, with Monti's options still murky and the outcome of Berlusconi's frenetic maneuvers wholly unclear. But it does raise the question, especially as Vendola is being pretty carefully marginalized (see post for 12/14), that there may not be much of a Left in this race--unfortunate for Italy, and for the larger EU, which could use an alternative vision of the possibile. But the two months before the vote will be an eternity: IF Monti runs, and IF he gathers the center of the center-left, might Bersani renew his ties to Vendola and run a real left campaign? One possibility among many ...


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