In the past, the administrative elections, although they only concern the designation of mayors and municipal councilors, have also had important effects on the government, sometimes with resignations and reshuffles of ministers. This time, most likely, it will not be like this: according to all analysts and observers, the executive led by Draghi should not have repercussions and continue in its work at least until the election of the President of the Republic. Also because, in addition to affecting only a part of the Italian municipalities, the turnout was modest, just over 50% and even less in large cities. In short, these elections have “mobilized” the citizens very little.
Nevertheless, there will be very important effects on the parties, especially as regards their internal equilibrium, but also probably, in the relations between them. The main consequences will occur in the center-right: an area for which these elections have essentially represented a defeat. If the center-left wins the ballot in Turin and Rome (both possible events) it will even be a real “coat”, which sees the center-right succumb in all five main cities in which it voted (with the partial consolation of victory, however obvious, of Occhiuto in Calabria). The defeat is all the more bitter because, until a few months ago, it was far from obvious. In Milan, for example, before the summer, the center-right was given by many polls as a winner in terms of consensus. And the surveys conducted on some candidates that had been talked about (Albertini in the first place) showed that the latter had an excellent chance of defeating the outgoing mayor. Conversely, the belatedly and laboriously chosen candidate immediately showed his weaknesses. Perhaps because little known or due to the short time available for the electoral campaign, Bernardo appeared to find it difficult to convince the center-right electorate itself and, even less, the fundamental one of the undecided. According to various observers, a significant portion of the center-right abstained, not wanting to vote neither he nor Sala. With the result that the latter won in the first round and that the turnout (as also in Turin) fell below 50%. A sign that most of the citizens have not been carried away by either of the two main candidates (and not even by the others).
A partially analogous argument, naturally mutatis mutandis, can be made for the case of Rome. Here, too, the candidate chosen by the center-right has aroused perplexity in some areas of its own electorate. By conducting an election campaign that has been criticized by many. In the capital, unlike in Milan, we will go to the ballot, but all the polls currently available suggest that Gualtieri (who will enjoy the contribution of a good part of the votes that went to Virginia Raggi in the first round) will eventually prevail. In short, the choice of “civic” candidates for the center-right (an obligatory option given the difficulty of an agreement between the parties on “political” figures) did not bear fruit. But it is not just a question of “wrong choice of candidates”, as many have said. Research also suggests that some of the issues most supported by the center-right in recent months (from the no green pass onwards) may not have been totally in tune with its electorate.
Even in Turin, the result of the center left went beyond expectations and was not fully foreseen by the polls. Thanks also to the high abstention rate: as in Milan, less than half of those entitled voted. Some findings suggest that the desertion from the polls was more intense in the less central areas which, in the past, represented a reservoir for the center-right.
Finally, a note of caution. The center-left tends today, not only in Italy, but in many parts of Europe (and even in Istanbul which is only half of Europe) to prevail in the big cities, remaining in the minority elsewhere. Also for this reason, it will be necessary to carefully examine the results of these elections in all the municipalities in which they voted and not only in the major ones. At the national level in Italy the center-right is still ahead in terms of consensus. In light of the debacle of these administrative offices, he will be able to find the cohesion and the vision to maintain this advantage until the next political elections.