RAFFAELE FITTO is a man in a hurry. The black limousine with darkened windows hurtling through the gathering darkness hits 160kph (100mph) as it rushes him to his next campaign stop. With barely two weeks to go before Italy’s general election, Mr Fitto has just inaugurated his party’s headquarters in Bari, the regional capital of his native Puglia, the “heel” of Italy’s boot, in the deep south. Yet the party he leads, which was founded only in December with the odd name of Noi con l’Italia (NcI, roughly: We’re with Italy), could make a crucial difference to the outcome of the vote on March 4th.
The main pollsters agree that the only electoral alliance with a chance of winning an absolute majority in the next parliament is the one forged on the right by Silvio Berlusconi, a former prime minister. Vowing to clamp down on illegal immigration and introduce a flat-rate income tax, Mr Berlusconi and his allies have gained in the polls as the centre-left Democratic Party...Continue reading