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Giorgia Meloni, Italian PM and far-right leader, wins European Parliament polls, becomes kingmaker in Europe

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Italy’s far-right leader, Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, has reinforced her political dominance both at home and within the European Union. Her Brothers of Italy party clinched a notable 28 per cent of the votes in the European elections, strengthening her leadership and influence.

Election Results

Projections by state broadcaster RAI, based on nearly 70 per cent of the votes counted, confirmed the Brothers of Italy party’s status as the country’s leading political force. This result surpasses the 26 per cent vote share they garnered in the 2022 general elections.
Meloni’s victory has come at a cost to her governing partners in Rome. Matteo Salvini’s League party, which led the 2019 EU elections with over 34 per cent of the vote, plummeted to just 8.5 per cent. Forza Italia, previously a junior partner, achieved over 9 per cent.

Opposition Performance

On the opposition front, the centre-left Democratic Party secured 24.5 per cent, while the populist Five Star Movement saw a significant decline to 10.5 per cent, a drop of seven points from 2019.

Impact on EU Leadership

Meloni’s personalized campaign has positioned her as a formidable figure within the EU, where far-right parties have made substantial gains. This shift has posed significant challenges to leaders such as French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

Meloni’s Response

At her party headquarters, Meloni expressed pride in the results. “I’m proud that we are heading to the G7 and to Europe with the strongest government of all,” she stated. She described the outcome as “extraordinary” and pledged to use the momentum for future initiatives.

Future Challenges

Despite this support, Meloni’s government faces challenges, particularly with Italy’s precarious public finances and the upcoming 2025 budget. Giovanni Orsina, director of the school of government at LUISS University in Rome, remarked, “Meloni gets out of these elections stronger, first of all because this is a government that has not lost consensus, which is quite unique in Europe.”

European Parliament Representation

The Brothers of Italy party is projected to secure 23 to 25 seats in the European Parliament, a significant increase from the six seats they held after the 2019 elections. This gain underscores Meloni’s ascent from a minor opposition figure to a central player on the European stage.

PM Modi to Visit Italy for G7 Summit

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will attend Group of Seven (G7) Summit in Italy, set for June 13-15. Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni extended the invitation to Modi in April. The G7, an informal forum, includes Italy, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, the UK, and the USA, along with the European Union, represented by the Presidents of the European Council and the European Commission. Italy took over the G7 Presidency on January 1, 2024, and will hold it until December 31, 2024.

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