What to Make of the New Leader of Italy’s Populist Five Star Movement

What to Make of the New Leader of Italy’s Populist Five Star Movement
Luigi Di Maio of Italy’s Five Star Movement speaks during a protest outside parliament moments after a vote in favor of a new election law, Rome, Italy, Oct. 12, 2017 (AP photo by Gregorio Borgia).

BOLOGNA—Italy’s Five Star Movement has a new leader. At the national meeting for the upstart populist party late last month—calling it a congress would be far too formal for the anti-establishment movement—its co-founder, comedian Beppe Grillo, stepped down as the political leader, although he will remain its “garante,” or judge of final appeal for internal disputes. An online primary in which a mere 37,000 people voted anointed Luigi Di Maio as the new political head of the M5S, as the party is known in Italy. The election was clearly the result of a backroom fix of the kind the M5S […]

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