The time of private retreat is largely over. After the vote on Rousseau last 11 February with which the pentastellate base gave its green light to the entry of the M5S in the Draghi government, the former deputy had distanced himself from the Movement (“from today I no longer speak on behalf of the M5S “). Alessandro Di Battista is now back on the field, and does so outside the 5-star Movement. The former parliamentarian, out of the political arena for almost 4 years, has announced a tour throughout Italy together with “ex-colleagues, activists, citizens with open eyes”. A tour that, as he writes on Facebook, will try to “stimulate a public debate on obscured, hidden issues, cleverly covered by a system of power that enjoys seeing us distracted”.
What Alessandro Di Battista has in mind
“If there are 40 people in the square, I will take note, but if there are 400, then I will have to take on different responsibilities” explains the former grillino. “For now I do what I like most: political battles. Then we’ll see”, he stresses. And from his Facebook page he clarifies: “I don’t miss the building, on the contrary. I miss politics, the nights spent talking about ideas, projects, meetings around Italy, baths of hope”. Alessandro Di Battista’s return to politics will start from Siena, from the city which is – according to the former M5S deputy – the symbol of an important event: the acquisition of Monte dei Paschi by Unicredit, chaired by the former Minister of Economy of the Democratic Party Piercarlo Padoan.
But Di Battista also intends to address other topics with his possible future voters, with whom he now wants to make a first contact, to probe the atmosphere and moods. Add to the cauldron “the conflicts of interest between politics and finance, the connections between investment funds, pharmaceutical companies and the arms lobbies, an electoral law that gives us the possibility to choose our representatives, the fight against modern corruption”. again: “The rights of the least, the rights of separated fathers, the middle class to the collapse.” Di Battista is very critical of the whole path taken by the Movement, especially since he joined the Draghi government. on the presence of so much extreme right in the street protests against the Green Pass, it is caustic: “If trade unions, parties (left?), pseudo-intellectuals and journalists had lashed out against the abolition of Article 18, the release of layoffs , relocations, starvation wages and the transformation of Fiat as today are lashing out against the “alleged” return of fascism, well, Italy would be a better country “.
There is a space left unguarded by the 5-star Movement
“It is the theory of the indistinct – he comments on Republic Annalisa Cuzzocrea – who brought so much good to the original 5-star Movement in an electoral key. And that Di Battista dusts off now that he wants to return to the streets. “Her exit from the 5-star Movement in 2018 was clearly a political move. She moved away from the” Roman palaces “also because, according to many observers, if she had remained standing there he idea of the two terms “and then home” would have ensured a future return to the scene on the following lap. Things then went very differently from what anyone could have imagined, but now the return could materialize. Elsewhere.
There is certainly a space left unguarded by the 5-star Movement when Conte decided, despite a thousand cautions and distinctions, to continue the adventure of the strange alliance with the Zingaretti dem. That “in Rome I will vote Roberto Gualtieri” pronounced by the former prime minister does not go down well with many nostalgics of the first hour. There are no particular sympathies or contacts between Di Battista and the now former mayor of Rome Virginia Raggi, with whom, however, relations have always remained friendly. Di Battista goes on his own, with a faithful squad including the former minister and current senator Barbara Lezzi. In Siena there will be the former undersecretary for the economy Alessio Villarosa, close to Di Battista is also the president of the parliamentary anti-mafia commission Nicola Morra. Ignazio Corrao, former head of the M5s delegation to the European Parliament, could also play a role in the return.
Perhaps there is a minimum margin of maneuver, if you look at Gianluigi Paragone with his surprising 3 per cent in Milan and the only civic list of Virginia Raggi at 4 per cent in Rome and, more generally, a basic part that does not would have a bad eye on a return to “vaffa” (or at least to the opposition).
“I have never bowed to this political system by choosing to put our ideas in front of everything (even at my convenience),” Di Battista wrote on Facebook. “I have always considered bipolarism a scam. The two large sides, knowing that first one and then the other (according to the principle of alternation) will come to power, avoid stepping on their toes too much. Or rather, they pretend to do so. They argue over nonsense only to then passionately endorse justice reforms, cuts to the welfare state, military missions abroad disguised as peacekeeping missions, waste of public money, increase in privileges, prebends, gifts to politics, appointments “, he underlines. “The government of the gathering (they say it is a parenthesis but there are plenty of politicians who hope for its continuation even after 2023) is a confirmation of this”. Perhaps in the event of a continuation of the very wide agreements forever the same “Dibba” is also the first to hope. In that case the void left by the first M5s would be more evident.
Will he found his own party?
It is impossible to know if he will really decide to found something of his own. There are those who bet on it. He, in his words, “started fighting”. It remains to understand what the objective of the battle is and what are the possible opponents: even former friends like Luigi Di Maio, Roberto Fico and Giuseppe Conte? The crazy idea, that someone is airing today, of gathering consensus and scattered votes to resurrect the M5s, with another name, in the event of future electoral defeats is fascinating, it must be said. Politics exists as a place of relations between several social actors around issues that affect the community to which they belong. It will be interesting to understand how much Di Battista will really be able to put the issues that are close to his heart at the center of attention. Or, more prosaically, see how many people there will be in the square to listen to him.
The writer has no particular sympathies for Di Battista. But it is inevitable to emphasize a specific point. In an Italy, that of the end of 2021, led by a premier who goes on like a train, eliminating not in the ways, always super institutional, but in fact, all the distinctions between the parties, abstention is skyrocketing. The desire to participate in public affairs, at the minimum terms. Also for this reason a possible full square to listen to the former parliamentarian would be good news. His hand in the stratospheric rise of consensus that characterized the first decade of the existence of the M5s has been there, and has perhaps been underestimated. The social irony is unleashed every time the “Dibba” returns to the media scene. Sometimes with good reason, due to odd shots against the strong powers, a great classic. Others less: this time it seems that Di Battista before others has perceived the subtle, growing, legitimate unease of a good part of the electorate and a small part of the elected M5s in view of a more stable alliance with the Democratic Party. Precisely that Pd which, according to Di Battista (in September 2019) is “the party of strong powers”.