Italian regional elections are tomorrow. They aren't really like UK local elections because regional governance is extremely powerful; Italy is deeply embedded in the European Union model of governance, of the the state, with regions holding direct and important relations with the EU. So, Italian passport and electoral registration certificate in hand, I will cast my vote for who rules Tuscany tomorrow.
As ever, the political confusion is -well - confusing. The national political parties all have candidates standing, as does the Movimento 5 Stelle, but the statuses of various candidates has been called into question both by the Anti-Mafia Commission and by the conflict between laws and the (remarkably slow) delivery of justice. A recent law made it impossible for those under anti-Mafia investigation and/or convicted at various stages of the judicial process, to serve, if elected. More particularly the Anti-Mafia Commission is required to publish the names of those at various stages in the judicial process. You might think such people would not be put forward for election, considering the inability to serve if elected but No, the Partito Democratico has allowed names on the list to compete in the primaries and, democracy being what it is, some candidates have been 'chosen' in the primaries and are therefore standing.
The PD candidate for Campania (listed, indeed convicted in the first degree but appealing) declared that to stop him standing he would have to be shot in the head. Be careful what you ask for might be the response to that but his view is that he 'won' the Campania PD primary and stands even though if elected he cannot serve. Unless the PD national Executive, Renzi's government, enacts some law by decree altering the current status quo, thus allowing a convicted (in the first degree) contravenor of the Anti-Mafia laws, to take office. Forza Italia has candidates with the same defect.
So, as well as my Italian passport and my electoral registration certificate I shall have to have my conscience with me as well. As far as I can see, only the electors can break through this unholy mess of: judicial slowness; ill-drafted legislation; the instrumentalisation of what should be a super parties anti-Mafia undertaking by a faction of the PD (the old Left faction who want to derail Renzi's government); and the mass corruption of the democratic process in some parts of the country during the primaries.
Any coalition or party with one of these iffy candidates ought to be avoided. So that's the Partito Democratico (centre left), Forza Italia (centre right) and all their bits and pieces unvotable.
Which leaves 5 Stelle, (mass, anti political party movement), Lega Nord, (Italian UKIP), and SEL (Sinistra, Ecologia, Liberta', sort of Greens). There are lots and lots of issues here but only three coalitions meeting the primary requirement that all their candidates are eligible to stand and to serve.