“Franceschini’s revenge”, they call it in the Democratic Party. The person concerned has stopped intervening in the affairs of the party for months, concentrating on his own department. And when Dario Franceschini is silent, it is usually not a good sign for those who lead the Democrats. Also because he, in private, continues to talk to all those who can shift the balance, inside and outside the Democratic Party: from Stefano Bonaccini to Matteo Renzi, up to the big bosses of the big group in the middle ground of parliament, which in February promises to be decisive for the election of the head of state.
For years the 63-year-old former Christian Democrat from Ferrara, leader of the Areadem current, has been the protagonist of every revolution at the top of his party. It was next to Pier Luigi Bersani and then to Enrico Letta, when he was head of the government. He swerved sharply to support Renzi, which then did not prevent him from supporting Nicola Zingaretti. So, in the face of the Lazio governor’s bankruptcy, he was among those who pushed Letta the most, so that he would return from his Parisian exile to take over the company. He expected a little of gratitude from the new secretary, but did not get it.
On the contrary, Franceschini has been deprived of the most important political role: at the time of Zingaretti he was the head of the delegation of the Pd in government, with Letta the task passed to the Minister of Labor, Andrea Orlando, whom Franceschini cordially detests. In short. In the Democratic Party they explain that it is “the pay for the 2014 betrayal”, when Franceschini passed from Letta to Renzi. The minister did not take it well, and while in public he talks about cinema and theaters, he weighs the next moves. The confusion under the sky of the Democratic Party he is great, and this makes Franceschini’s situation excellent. The current minority current, reformist base, to which they belong Lorenzo Guerini e Luca Lotti, pushes to hold the party congress, and therefore choose the next secretary, in October 2022. So before the next elections, if the legislature lasts until the natural expiry.
Letta makes it known that there is no mention of it, because he intends to compile the electoral lists. The difference will be made by the internal power relations, and Franceschini’s votes in the national assembly, as a rule, are decisive. It is not certain that his designs coincide with those of Letta, on the contrary: the Minister of Culture, today, has much better relations with Bonaccini than with the secretary. And at least half of the Democratic Party is betting on the Emilian governor, who wants to run him against Letta at the congress. Franceschini sponsor of Bonaccini’s climb? “It’s a possibility,” they say from the reformist base, where the idea certainly wouldn’t mind.
Also because Bonaccini’s victory would be followed by the downsizing of the agreement with Giuseppe Conte and the Five Stars: together yes, but in an alliance that also includes Renzi and his Italia Viva, as well as Carlo Calenda. Moreover, very few among the Democrats believe that political elections can be won with the sole support of the Grillini and Leu. We will understand more during the match for the Quirinale. It is no mystery that Franceschini’s first candidate is himself, but take the place of Sergio Mattarella it would be an arduous undertaking. Letta at the moment does not have a clear agenda, also because on the left of his party there are those who want to persuade him to vote for Draghi, in order to provoke an early vote.
Renzi, on the contrary, knows what he wants: to bring to the Hill a candidate who does not trigger the early end of the legislature, therefore different from Draghi, and if it is not Mattarella, it will be necessary to get another one out of the hat. In the Democratic Party many, including Franceschini, think the same way. If in February an axis between the two were consolidated, Bonaccini would have excellent reasons to warm up in view of the congress, and Letta would have valid reasons to worry.