Italy has an election coming up this weekend, and with the polls projecting a “far-right win” according to CNBC, this has upset the European Union and the far-left in Italian politics, with European Union Commission President Ursula von der Leyen threatening sanctions in a recent video.
The video shows von der Leyen answering questions from the media before the subject of Italy is brought up. With the election set for this weekend, the EU Commission president made the comment, “We’ll see if things go in a difficult direction.” She continued, making a remark about Poland and Hungary, saying “I’ve spoken about Hungary and Poland, we have tools if things go in the right direction.”
Giorgia Meloni, the leader of the political party Brothers of Italy, which is favoured to capture the largest share of votes this weekend, is a national-conservative, populist and eurosceptic party that wants to slash immigration rates, stop the migrant boats arriving into Italy and a third child policy in a bid to bolster the country's declining birth rate. Left-wing media outlets have labelled the move as "neo-medieval" and "reminiscent" of fascist dictator Benito Mussolini's policies in the 1920s and 30s.
While the party barely even scraped 4% of the national vote, now polls have projected it has risen to 25% for the election this Sunday, which could see an alliance formed between the conservatives to clear a parliamentary majority.
In short, if the victory occurs this Sunday in Italy, the EU has threatened sanctions using “tools” against the country if somebody they do not like holds parliamentary power — so democratic.
The EU Commission famously sanctioned Hungary and Poland and cut billions of funds to the country through the top EU courts, and when the people of Hungary democratically elected Viktor Orban back into power, the European Union responded by pushing through funding cuts against Hungary.
All eyes are on Italy this weekend.