Monday, April 10, 2006

Participation on the rise in Italy

The good thing about italian elections is that the participation is always high (more than 80 %), and very high if compared with other countries such as Britain (a little more than 60 %).

The first data on the turn out of these two day elections are positive. In fact, according to official statistics the number of voters who have already expressed their preference is higher than before.

Even if participation is partly due to the polarized and tense atmosphere, it nonetheless remains an important ingredient of a well functioning democratic system.

I wonder whether it would be desirable to trade off participation with an anesthetyzed election, as it was the case for example in the last UK elections.

I have strong views on the lack of self-control of italian politicians, but equally I believe that passion should not be completely withdrawn. I guess the problem lies in passion for ideologies as opposed to passions for genuine ideals.

But even that line is very thin, and it is hard to keep things in order when passion is so overwhelmingly present, as it is the case in Italy.

In less than three hours, at 15.00 Rome time, the ballots will be closed and we will start having an impression of where the italian passion lies this time.

1 comment:

Euan MacDonald said...

Official turnout figure is 83.6%, up from the already high 81.4% in 2001. Certainly more impressive than the UK's 61.4% in 2005.