Italy heads to the polls on Sunday. It is likely to be another illustration of the uneasy relationship between the country’s volatile democratic politics and the strictures of Brussels’ political and economic orthodoxy.
The country’s Prime Minister is a classic cakeist – berating the EU on the one hand, but not seeking to leave on the other.
Plus: Johnson, not a populist. Hunt’s beside manner. Lewis and his highly professional CCHQ team. And: the courage of 16 year old Ajay.
She yesterday achieved the outcome most likely to prop her up – at least for the time being. But Cooper, Letwin and Bercow are waiting in the wings.
Will fans of the EU establishment be quite so keen on unaccountable, centralised institutions when their opponents start appointing commissioners?
It works best when painting a substantive contrast on issues that voters care about. And here are four strategic choices for the Conservatives.
Merkel is threatened. Macron is outraged. Brussels is paralysed. And all three trends are taken by their opponents as signs that they are winning.
Some Italians hoped Brexit would make Brussels realise it had gone too far. Instead, the EU elite has doubled down, regardless of troublesome voters.
Storming results for the Five Star Movement and the League pose big challenges to the established structure of Italian politics, to the EU, and to the left more generally.
Traditionally, a technocratic government would now steer the country through choppy waters. But this time that could lead to more instability.