Italy’s right nears local election success

Currently in opposition, Meloni’s national-conservative and populist Brothers of Italy chose to run alone in several municipalities and seem set to grow in most towns and cities. [EPA-EFE/ALESSANDRO DI MEO]

The conservatives were successful in many municipalities, and Giorgia Meloni’s right-wing Brothers of Italy party is set surpass Matteo Salvini’s League, early results from Italy’s local elections show.

On Sunday (12 June), local elections marked the last test for Italian parties ahead of the general election in 2023.

Currently in opposition, Meloni’s national-conservative and populist Brothers of Italy chose to run alone in several municipalities and seem set to grow in most towns and cities.

Many analysts see the party gaining ground in the major vote as a step that could allow Meloni to claim leadership within the right-wing coalition containing the League and Forza Italia.

This might raise tensions among conservatives, with Meloni’s growing influence resulting in a rivalry with his coalition partner, former vice-Prime Minister Matteo Salvini.

But Salvini is unlikely to step back and let Meloni replace him.

“The leader of the centre-right will be decided by the Italians at the next political elections”, he noted during a press conference from his party headquarters.

In the meantime, the election saw a low turnout, with only 54% of Italians going to the polls to elect their mayors. The issue raises concerns ahead of the 2023 general elections.

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