Landini’s own goal on the tax wedge

The opposition of politics and interests is the salt of democracy, but it must start from respect for reality. Otherwise it’s a propaganda war. It has not been respectful of the truth Giorgia Meloni who, approving the Labor decree, spoke of the “most important cut in labor taxes in recent decades”. But it was no less Maurizio Landini which, indeed, in the deformation of the facts went even further than the promotional video of the Prime Minister. The leader of the CGIL has even come to deny himself.

Interviewed by Giovanni Floris on “Di tuesday”, Landini completely rejected the cut in the tax wedge made by the government: “Money is scarce, it is gross and it is only onewas the sentence. If this is the criticism of the general secretary of the CGIL, he should address it first to himself. Because the resources put in place by the government will be few, but higher than the demands of the union. With the 4 billion added by the Minister of Economy Giancarlo Giorgetti with the Def, the reduction of contributions paid by workers rose from 2 to 7% income up to 25,000 euros, e dal 2 al 6% for incomes up to €35,000. Maurizio Landini asked for less: 5%.

In November 2022, when the extension of the 2-point contribution reduction introduced by the Draghi government expiring at the end of the year was under discussion, Landini asked “that the cut in the tax wedge is not 2 points but 5 points”. With the budget law, the government decided to add another point and to always allocate it to workers rather than to companies: 4.6 billion were allocated for 3 de-contribution points. The CGIL and the UIL decided to strike anyway, putting the general strike the request for “Increase wages by bringing the decontribution to 5 percent for wages up to 35,000 euros”. Just a few weeks ago, on April 17, in the parliamentary hearing on the Def, on the cut of the tax wedge, the CGIL asked “that it reaches 5% for middle and low incomes”. Five points were more than enough, but now that the government has reached a cut of 6-7 points they are “few”. A lot or a little is a subjective assessment, but if a result superior to its requests is considered poor, the CGIL should perhaps lock itself in a room, make a critical evaluation of its platform and clear its head before expressing it in public.

Also Landini’s criticism that the most money in the paycheck “they are gross” it’s really surreal. Because it was the union that asked for the cut in contributions, and it is obvious that such an intervention involves an increase in the income on which Irpef is paid. It is strange that Landini realizes this now and ridiculous that he accuses Meloni of having done exactly what he asked. About whether the measure is only one that’s true, but Landini manages to contradict himself shortly afterwards. “They tell one thing they don’t pay, they say ‘Let’s give a 100 euro raise’. Actually We have already obtained 40 euros with Draghi by striking. What they are putting in now is 50-60 euros for six months”. Here it is Landini who launches into “untrue” statements. In the first place it is not true that the 2-point cut in contributions was obtained by union strikes. The first reduction of 0.8 points came with the 2022 Budget Law, against which the CGIL and UIL went on strike after. Subsequently, in August 2022, to deal with the energy crisis, the contribution exemption was raised to 2 points with the Aiuti-bis decree. But the general strike has nothing to do with it. Furthermore, it is incorrect to argue that of the current increase in the payroll “40 euros we have already obtained with Draghi”, because Draghi’s tax waiver was also only one and expired in December 2022.

It was the Meloni government that extended that cut in the contribution wedge in 2023. Unless Landini meant that once a tax relief was approved, even if only onethen tends to be extended and therefore Meloni was “forced” to renew it. But if this is the reasoning, then the criticism of the 7-point cut of the contributions that is is also considerably attenuated only onebecause evidently the government will be forced to extend it in the budget law also because on the eve of the European elections of 2024.

The union must confront and even clash with the government, but with respect for numbers and reality. In 2007 the architrave of the economic policy of the Prodi government it was a cut in the tax wedge of 7 billion, but divided 60% in favor of companies and 40% in favor of workers. This year, between the Budget Law and the Def, the Meloni government has allocated 8.6 billion all to workers. Responding with the “mobilization” of the square because “they are few and gross” means demagoguery, that a practice that belongs more to the opposition than to the union. The less serious ones, of course.

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