Brussels, 5 December 2016
Commenting on the results of the Constitutional referendum held in Italy on Sunday 4 December, European Green Party Co-Chair Monica Frassoni said:
“This vote is not for or against the European Union. It is a vote on a constitutional reform that Matteo Renzi wrongfully tried to transform in a plebiscite on himself and his government. He wanted to play the populist game and lost it. Today populist and right wing forces in Italy seem to be stronger. But this is not inevitable and the battle to make Italy fit for the future and able to change its social and economic policies is wide open. Italy's role in changing the austerity policies at EU level is absolutely crucial.
“With yesterday's vote, Italians also say that constitutional reform is not the priority for the country and the one proposed by Renzi is not the right one. Changing the Constitution is necessary but not vital at this stage, as economic and social issues are far more urgent to solve. Italy is still growing too slowly and has no real strategy to create jobs apart from cutting labour cost.
"The ineffective, substantial continuity with Berlusconi and Monti as far as energy and industrial policies are concerned and the too long leniance with the EU austerity measures are also key in explaining yesterday's defeat.
"Now the battle for the referendum is over and the fronts are no more those of the YES or No to Renzi. Just like Austrians showed with the election of Alexander van der Bellen, also in Italy there is a strong anti-populist and pro-european front, interested in real change. We want to restart from there.”
- ENDS -
Head of Communications and Press