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Renzi predicts long life for govt if election law approved

'Otherwise it's straight to new elections'

27 January, 11:47
Renzi predicts long life for govt if election law approved (ANSA) - Rome, January 27 - Democratic Party (PD) head Matteo Renzi said Monday that if his election law passes a vote in parliament, "the legislature can last as long as 2018". In one of his first acts since winning the center-left leadership in a landslide vote last month, the charismatic young mayor of Florence struck a controversial deal with ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi, leader of the center-right Forza Italia party, to introduce a new election bill earlier this month. That law, which is scheduled to go to the floor of the House on Wednesday, would replace the current law that was ruled invalid by the Constitutional Court.

The discredited law produced inconclusive elections almost one year ago, followed by two months of government gridlock, which was only broken upon a compromise to form a coalition left-right government. Headed by Premier Enrico Letta, the executive was subject to repeated threats of downfall after its onset in April due to its unprecedented composition of political rivals. Speaking to Italian daily Il Messaggero, Renzi said that if his reform proposal is defeated in a secret vote, "we'll go straight to new elections with the (current law)," which would confirm that parliament is "unreliable".