Saturday, April 15, 2006

Further adventures in electoral democracy

Here's a picture of the swing district in the recent Italian election.

In recent years, the government of outgoing Italian PM Sylvio Berlusconi introduced a measure allowing people of Italian descent to vote in Italian elections. The theory behind it, if you can call it that, was that anyone who could prove descent from Italians in the male line should be represented in parliament.

The election turned out to be so close that the electors in "North and Central America," many of whom have a rather tenuous connection with Italy, helped determine the result; which went against the people who introduced the measure.

Bet they didn't expect that!

It will be interesting to see whether overseas representation of people who are Italians by male descent survives this event. Or whether there is a big push for Italians by female or mixed descent to get equivalent privilege.

More on this from Toronto's Globe and Mail.


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