November 30, 2022

Brighton Journal

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Meloni: “I’ve never felt close to anti-democratic regimes, including fascism” | Inaugural speech by Italian far-right leader

From Rome

Italy’s new prime minister is far-right Georgia Meloney of Fratelli d’Italia, to appear before the Chamber of Deputies this Tuesday, to receive A vote of confidence You can’t work without it. Tomorrow he will do it before the Senate. In both houses, a half-and-one vote is required to pass the vote of confidence. In the assembly, he secured 235 votes out of a total of 400 votes and won the confidence. All indications are that he will get it in the Senate as well. Government coalition led by Maloney (Fratelli d’Italia, Matteo Salvini’s La Liga and Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia) have majorities in both chambers.

Immigrants

The new Prime Minister addressed the House for over an hour, presenting what his government’s work was. Although he mentioned so at the end of the speech, among the many things he mentioned, Th migrationsOne thing in particular Salvini And his party has always been very anxious to consider the country to its disadvantage. Statistics recently released by some research institutes on migration speak to the benefits that migrants bring. In fact, legal foreign workers (5.2 million) produced 9% of Italian GDP in 2021, according to the Leon Moresa Foundation.

According to Meloni, “we need to stop illegal departures from North Africa” ​​and the actions of human traffickers to avoid more deaths in the Mediterranean. “Italy does not enter illegally,” he stressed, but this does not mean that people fleeing wars or persecution are prevented from entering. He also proposed improving EU economic development programs for Africa so that young people are not forced to come to Europe in search of a better life.

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Meloni, on the other hand, insisted on an ulterior motive, speaking in front of the cameras while his two deputy prime ministers, Salvini and Antonio Tajani of Forza Italia, sat beside him. Denies accusations of being a philo-fascist, his government “does not limit freedom” and is against “racism, discrimination and political violence”, and describes the “race laws” imposed by fascist dictator Benito Mussolini as “the shame of our history”. “Freedom and democracy are characteristic elements of contemporary European civilization and I have always identified with them. I have never been sympathetic or close to anti-democratic regimes, including fascism,” he said.

The Pope and the Role of Women

To repeated applause, Meloni referred to Pope Francis, referring to poverty, underlining that “it is not solved by aid, but fought by work,” which is what they want, and that is why they are opposed. “Citizenship Income” He explained that (cash assistance for those who lost their jobs during epidemic crises) should be aimed at elderly people in need or families with problems.

He also dedicated special thanks to women for being the first woman in Italian history to hold the post of Prime Minister. “I have a great responsibility to all the women who sacrifice every day and to those who have fought for so many things that have allowed me to get to this point,” she said, referring to many of them by their last name, not just their first name. Journalist and writer Oriana Fallaci or Nilde Iotti, one of the representatives since 1948, member of various left-wing parties starting with the Communist Party and first female president of the Chamber of Deputies (1979-1992).

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Support for Ukraine

Regarding Italy’s membership of the European Union, an issue that some countries with right-wing governments in Europe, such as Hungary and Poland, question and want to secede, she said her government “respects and wants European rules. Try to change them.” Not working.” In this context, he expressed his support for the “Ukrainian people resisting the Russian invasion,” a point of contention within the government. Berlusconi is Putin’s friend And Salvini is someone who respects him.

He stressed that the current situation in Italy “does not allow us to waste time”, listing problems (not concrete measures) that need to be solved and changed in the country. Among them the Energy crisis And since the war in Ukraine began, the price of tickets has increased enormously, and the amount of gas coming from Russia has decreased. To that end he proposed exploiting gas wells in the Mediterranean and stimulating renewable energies.

The new prime minister said he was in favor of attracting foreign investment, blaming “previous governments that didn’t know how to solve problems” as Italy is forecast to hit an economic recession next year. The PNRR (National Recovery Plan agreed with the European Union, which provided countries with millions of euros in aid.) to modernize Italy, establish a fiscal pact and To reduce taxes, Reform the Constitution Making Italy a presidential country (today the president doesn’t have many powers, everything depends on the chambers) and have an industrial policy that stimulates agricultural food production, fashion and tourism, among other popular areas of Italy. He had encouraging words for the employment of young men and women and promised investments to develop southern Italy, where he promised to aggressively fight the mafias that Italy had been dragging since the end of the 19th century.

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Opposition

After the prime minister’s speech, opposition representatives, above all the leaders of the two main opposition parties, the Democratic Party (PD) and the Five Star Movement (M5S), Enrico Letta and Giuseppe Count, explained why they should vote against confidence in Meloni. respectively. Both agreed that the Prime Minister did not mention any concrete steps he would take to address urgent issues such as expensive tickets for Italians, the energy crisis, pensions and the minimum wage.

Although Fratelli d’Italia is the leading party in the country today, Conte specifically noted that one Italian out of every four eligible voters voted in the September 25 elections, so Fratelli d’Italia did not represent a majority. from the country. The head of M5S criticized Meloni for referring to Pope Francis and asking him not to do so “as a tool”. The prime minister did not mention “peace” in his message as the only way out of the war, and he insisted that Italy should invest in education rather than overinvesting in arms production.