Former TV journalist Gianluigi Paragone presents his Italexit party, which aims to bring Italy out of the European Union.
An Italian senator has launched a political party that aims to get Italy out of the European Union, just after Rome struck a huge coronavirus recovery fund deal with the bloc.
Former TV journalist Gianluigi Paragone presented his “Italexit” party on Thursday, two days after a meeting in London with Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage, who was instrumental in the UK’s decision to leave the EU.
Paragone referred to a survey carried out in late June by pollster Piepoli Institute, which found that around 7% of Italians would likely vote for a party campaigning to leave the EU.
“The consensus will only grow further, in line with the lies that Europe is telling us,” he said.
Political analyst and polling expert Renato Mannheimer said Italians’ feelings towards the EU had “changed considerably in recent months … although we remain the country that trusts Brussels the least”.
An initial perceived failure on the part of the bloc to respond quickly to the coronavirus pandemic in Italy angered and disappointed the population but since then support for the EU has increased again, he said.
The recovery plan
A 750 billion euros ($ 860 billion) stimulus package agreed by EU leaders, with a large tranche earmarked for Italy, will likely further boost that support.
âMost Italians don’t want to leave the EU. Only about 30 percent – rising to 40 percent at times – say yes initially, âMannheimer told AFP news agency.
This figure increases slightly for Italians in favor of leaving the euro zone.
“I don’t believe Paragone’s party can create a large enough audience for Italexit,” he said.
Paragone, who has previous ties to the League party of far-right leader Matteo Salvini, was elected with the anti-establishment Five Star Movement but left shortly after forming a government with the Democratic Party ( PD) pro-European last year.
The Five Star Movement and the League have both softened their anti-eurozone stance to attract more moderate voters.