Now That They’re in Power, How Will Italy’s Populists Govern?

Now That They’re in Power, How Will Italy’s Populists Govern?
Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte is cheered during celebrations for Italy’s Republic Day, Rome, June 2, 2018 (Fabio Frustaci for ANSA via AP).

Italy’s government crisis did its best to disprove the economist Herbert Stein’s axiom that “if something cannot go on forever, it will stop.” But 89 days after Italians voted on March 4, the crisis finally succumbed. A government drawn from Italy’s two leading populist parties—the anti-establishment Five Star Movement, or M5S, and the anti-immigration Lega, or League—was accepted by President Sergio Mattarella on May 31. The premiership will be entrusted to a law professor with no previous political experience, Giuseppe Conte, and several other technocrats will occupy key ministries. Political upheaval is notoriously part of the ritual of governance in […]

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