Washington D.C. – Today, October 18, Barack Obama received the Prime Minister of Italy, Matteo Renzi, in the White House just weeks before the referendum on December 4 of the reform anticipated by Renzi in Italy.
The two leaders share a close relationship which has strengthened the diplomatic and economic relations between the two countries. In the past, President Obama has stated that supports and praise most of Renzi’s ideas for Italy and Europe and sustains that his ideas will raise the Italian economy.
Relations between Italy and the United States
Since Matteo Renzi is the Prime Minister of Italy, the relations between the United States and Italy have strengthened, and during the management of Renzi, Italy allowed the U.S. to use Italian bases to have a strategic place to attack and fight against ISIS.
Similarly last week the government announced that Italy is joining a new force in Eastern Europe of the NATO. This makes Italy vital to combat ISIS from Europe and to support the U.S. to defeat the Islamic State.
Referendum in Italy
The former Prime Minister of Italy, Matteo Renzi, proposed a reform of the Italian Constitution where the population will vote in December whether to accept it and transform the Senate of the Republic to the Senate of Regions or deny the proposal. This change will reduce the power and the size of the Senate.
The Prime Minister is responsible both to the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies and must have the support of both institutions. The Senate is responsible for connecting with the central state, the European Union and subdivisions of the country.
In the past, Renzi has said that if people do not approve the reform, he will resign which will lead the possible uprising of the Five Star Movement party and compromise the credibility of the European Union in Italy. The 5SM party was founded in 2009 it is considered as an anti-populist, anti-establishment, environmentalist, anti-globalist and Eurosceptic party. The defeat of the reform could make the 5SM follow the steps of the United Kingdom and call a referendum to leave the European Union.
In 2014 Renzi also proposed a bill referendum that would affect the labor market and education but after the second voting the reform failed which cost him popularity in his country for the last two years.
This constitutional reform could be the third in Italy. The first one was in 2001 and the second one in 2006