Italy’s Nationalistic Agenda Reflects Weakening Public Support for the EU

Editor’s Note: This article was originally published three days ago, on Tuesday 5 June 2018; but it does give us insight into the current state of Italian politics. It is heartening to see nationalistic, right-wing populism incrementally gain ground across Europe to challenge Brussels’ authority. Is it a universal phenomenon throughout the continent? No, but it is encouraging. We will continue to follow events in Italy as they unfold. Mundilfury.

Italy’s new government is laying the groundwork to challenge Europe’s financial orthodoxy and immigration rules, setting out a euroskeptic policy agenda in a country where public frustration with the European Union has supplanted once-broad support.

In his inaugural speech to Parliament on Tuesday, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said his government would push for a change of the rules underpinning the eurozone to spur growth and cut the country’s massive debt, which he said austerity policies helped worsen.

“A new wind” is blowing in Italy, said Mr. Conte, who heads a government supported by the maverick 5 Star Movement and the hard-right League, which have come out strongly against the eurozone’s limits on public spending.

“If populism is listening to the needs of the people, we accept” such a label, he said.

The government on Tuesday won a confidence vote in the Italian Senate, the first of two parliamentary votes of confidence that will fully empower it. The second, in the lower house where the government…

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