The left hopes to seduce those who have not yet decided their vote to star in a surprise and turn the polls around
Livia Spezia already knows who she will vote for in the elections this Sunday, although it has cost her to make the decision. «One has her life and she cannot spend all day following the campaign and all the things that politicians say. I was in a mess, but finally yesterday I had a good time, armed myself with patience and started to take a look at the programs and read what the candidates had to say. I won’t tell you who I’ll vote for because it’s secret, but I confess it won’t be the center-right. I don’t like the constitutional reform that Meloni and Salvini have in mind.” Sitting on a chair in one of the bars in Piazza della Rotonda, in the center of Rome, this 60-year-old civil servant does not take her eyes off the Pantheon as she talks endlessly about politics, an argument with which Italians they are almost as passionate as football.
Until very recently, Livia was part of that 40% of voters who still do not know who they are going to vote for and not even if they will go to the polls. According to the experts, they will make the decision in the last hours and even in the booth, when it is their turn to choose the ballot. The option they finally opt for may be decisive in the outcome of the elections. That is precisely the burning nail that Enrico Letta, candidate of the Democratic Party (PD), the main force of the center-left, clings to in order to dream of turning the polls around. “The undecided are the first party,” says Letta, overwhelmed by the polls that unanimously predict the victory of the right-wing alliance led by the far-right Giorgia Meloni. Among progressive voters, it is particularly easy to find undecided voters, such as Elena, a teacher in her 50s who asks for help deciding the vote. “Advise me, who sees things from a certain distance and is closely following the campaign. I really don’t know what to do.”
loss of credibility
In an attempt to help voters, the University of Pisa and the European University Institute have developed a useful online application that, by answering a series of questions, allows you to find the party that best suits your understanding of politics. One of its creators is Eugenio Pizzimenti, a professor of political science, who fears that many of those undecided will end up becoming abstentionists. “The roots of low turnout go back a long way and are linked to the loss of credibility of Italian politics,” he explains.
Not even the multiplication of the electoral offer with the appearance of new parties helps to seduce the voters, according to the expert. “Many of them are electoral lists tied to individual characters that come and go. There are many options, it’s true, but it’s like when you go to a ‘discount’ supermarket: you have many products, but none of quality». In the last general elections, held in 2018, there was an abstention rate of 27%. If this appointment with the polls exceeds 35%, as some observers fear, “it will be an ugly sign of the quality of our democracy.”
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