Monday, September 16, 2019

Gallup Polls Forewarn Political Crises in Argentina and Italy


Pollsters were surprised that an expected close primary election became a 16-point rout of incumbent President Mauricio Macri’s government in a national vote August 16. A stalled economy and a revitalized Peronist Party with a more mild-mannered nominee, Alberto Fernández, put Macri on the defense.

A Gallup poll published August 17 showed 62 percent of Argentinians said the economy where they lived was getting worse. The negative view of the economy started shortly after Macri was elected and various austerity measures were enacted. An anticipated economic recovery failed to appear.

Presidential hopeful, Alberto Fernández (right), and former president, current
senator and vice-presidential hopeful, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner at
campaign rally in Rosario, Santa Fe, Aug. 7, 2019 | Frente de Todos/AFP


Confidence in the Italian government is at 21 percent among citizens according to Gallup (Aug. 20, 2019). It is down 10 percent in the last 5 years, from 31 percent in 2014. On Tuesday, the government fell as the center-right party withdrew its support and the prime minister resigned, possibly leading to a new election. Matteo Salvini, an anti-immigration, Eurosceptic nationalist, is gambling on winning a majority for his League party and govern without his current coalition partner, the Five Star Movement.

Giuseppe Conte (C) with ministers Matteo Salvini (L) and Luigi Di Maio
during his resignation speech, Aug. 20, 2019 | RTÉ Newsroom

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