06 June 2021
If Giorgia Meloni were cynical as she is not, she should applaud the cold fusion between Lega and Forza Italia and prepare to ride the prairies of the moderate center that will not be able to identify with the leadership of Matteo Salvini, a politician “very connoted in the collective imagination” , according to the euphemism used yesterday by Guido Crosetto in an interview with the press. The meaning is quite clear and we enlightened it a week ago in this newspaper: even if Salvini is acrobatic and protean, in Western chancelleries as well as in public perception his sovereign identity remains a monolith that is difficult to circumvent. And it is not necessarily a limit, on the contrary. He will bring to Forza Italia a critical mass of charisma and votes, not a few, Silvio Berlusconi will give us the Europopular coat of arms and a consensus necessary to guarantee the company an undeniable solidity. Giorgia is more realistic than cynical. She will not try to sabotage a project that also contradicts at least in part her ideal of a confederate coalition, a plan that, moreover, she was the first to project on the European chessboard. A popular nucleus depicted by the Cavaliere, a critical euro-minted identity wing tightly around the League and, in the middle, the growing conservative bloc that holds everyone together: this is the winning arc. A unitary ruling party in the service of Mario Draghi and with the solitary Brothers of Italy in the opposition will, if anything, have its problems in finding a continental balance. Unless Matteo is so determined to repaint himself with popularism by opening the way to more moderate figures in his League, sooner or later we will have to choose between Angela Merkel and Marine Le Pen. Not a little. It is then clear that Forza Lega or Lega Italia, you do a little, would also be born out of momentary contingencies: to count on a higher flight of administrative negotiations; offer a safe home to those who, paradoxically, believe so little in Berlusconi’s future that they want to convince the Knight to undergo the Salvinian Anschluss even at the cost of a split from Mara Carfagna and Maria Stella Gelmini (and Salvi ni is too smart not to negotiate even with the exiles, starting with the “brave” of Luigi Brugnaro and Giovanni Toti who, however, do not reciprocate too much fearing being burned in the bud by Berlusconi); remove the prospect of a Melonian premiership through algebraic ways, party additions and son daggi and at the same time insinuate that the most competitive center-right is the one in the majority while FdI is putting abundant but unripe hay on the farm. Although the sum of FI and Lega runs the risk of not making the total, because the initial success of the moderate-traction PDL is difficult to reproduce with reversed factors, the bet of the federators is roughly here: halfway between nothing new and the all to be redone, with the hindsight that Giorgia cannot grow out of all proportion. Then there are the characters, the personalities in play and a mute but gigantic variable called Dragons. The most wacky among the Brothers of Italy predict a “lose lose” scenario: with a figure like Salvini at the head of an allegedly moderate front, spaces are opened in the center and in the south to harvest while remaining immobile. Who knows. Meloni, monogamous as it is, remains appropriately convinced that internal competition cannot and must not jeopardize a variegated coalition logic commensurate with the expectations of an electorate that is more cohesive than its reference leaders. Woe to sacrifice consent for power, even at the cost of waiting. But wait what? This is where the Dragons variable comes into play. Beyond the background chatter, last Thursday’s one-to-one meeting between the premier and Giorgia was valid as the confirmation of a special relationship that should not be underestimated. The former European central banker remained in Jesuit silence for over an hour, encouraging and very attentive in listening to the proposals coming from the opposition monopoly. He is not lacking in institutional grace, we understood it, but there is more: the technician’s dry interest in collaborating with a rising leader with a hyper-political profile, with clear ideas, an abscissa and ordinate diagram that do not change from night to day. In Giorgia’s optimal scheme, the sphinx of Palazzo Chigi personifies the perfect lord protector who from the Quirinale guarantees in America – “I am here to represent a world, that of Atlanticism”, he repeats at every important interview – in Europe and on the markets the coming maturity of government of a conservative right that did not disappoint the expectations see system remaining in the minority. But there is a but, that is, there is at least one. Draghi seems destined not to move from Chigi until the natural expiry date, in 2023, and next year the new president of the Republic must be elected. In the best case scenario, if Sergio Mattarella accepts malgré soi a pro tempore reconfirmation, the current prime minister would arrive at the Colle one year later than expected, handing over to himself the special powers, a passage and a landscape still to be built. Otherwise, bread will be made with the flour that is there. The harvest promises to be abundant, it is a pity to waste it among the different souls of the same group.