Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has said Italy has a mandate to change the future of Europe, after his resounding success in Sunday’s EU election.
Renzi’s centre-left Democratic Party won more than 40 percent of the vote, fighting off a late challenge from Italy’s anti-establishment 5-Star movement.
‘‘Italy is present. Italy is stronger than the fears going through it. Italy is capable of playing a strong role is shaping Europe’s current path. First and foremost I feel this responsibility,’‘ Renzi said.
The result, was the Italian centre-left’s best electoral victory bolstered even further by the high turnout of 60 percent.
Commentators on Monday claimed Renzi was now in the driving seat to push through economic and political reforms and may also call a snap national election to consolidate his power in parliament.
In contrast, Sunday’s election was a bitter defeat for stand-up comic Beppe Grillo’s 5-Star movement which polled just over 20 percent. During the campaign he claimed he would win or give up politics.