The Politics of Veneto, a Region of Italy takes place in a framework of a semi-presidential representative democracy, whereby the President is the head of government, and of a pluriform multi-party system. Executive power is exercised by the Regional Government. Legislative power is vested in both the government and the Regional Council.
The Statute of Veneto was promulgated in 1971 and largely rewritten in 2011. Article 1 defines Veneto as an "autonomous Region", "constituted by the Venetian people and the lands of the provinces of Belluno, Padua, Rovigo, Treviso, Venice, Verona and Vicenza", while maintaining "bonds with Venetians in the world". Article 2 sets forth the principle of the "self-government of the Venetian people" and mandates the Region to "promote the historical identity of the Venetian people and civilisation".
On 22 October 2017 an autonomy referendum took place in Veneto: 57.2% of Venetians participated and 98.1% voted "yes".
Prior to the rise of Fascism, most of the deputies elected in Veneto were part of the liberal establishment (see Historical Right, Historical Left and Liberals), which governed Italy for decades, but also the main opposition parties, namely the Radical Party and the Italian Socialist Party, had a good sway among Venetian voters. In the 1919 general election, the first held with proportional representation, the Catholic-inspired Italian People's Party came first with 42.6% (gaining at least 10% more than in any other region) and the Socialists were in second place with 36.2%. In the 1924 general election, which led Italy to dictatorship, Veneto was one of the few regions, along with Lombardy and Piedmont, which did not return an absolute majority to the National Fascist Party.
From World War II to 1994 Veneto was the heartland of Christian Democracy, which polled 60.5% in the 1953 general election and steadily above 50% until the late 1970s, and led the Regional Government from its establishment in 1970 to 1993. In the 1990s Veneto became a stronghold of the centre-right Pole/House of Freedoms coalition, which governed the region from 1995 to 2010 under Giancarlo Galan of Forza Italia. In 2010 Galan was replaced by Luca Zaia of Liga Veneta-Lega Nord, who obtained a hefty and record-breaking 60.2% of the vote and whose coalition included The People of Freedom/Forza Italia and, since 2013, the New Centre-Right; Liga Veneta was the largest party with 35.2% of the vote. Zaia and Liga Veneta were confirmed in 2015, with a reduced but more cohesive majority, due to the split of Tosi List for Veneto and the diminishment of Forza Italia: Zaia won 50.1% of the vote, while Liga Veneta a thumping 40.9%, largely ahead of the opposition Democratic Party's 20.5%.
Veneto is home to Venetian nationalism (or Venetism), a political movement that appeared in the 1970s, demanding political and fiscal autonomy for the region (which is felt by Venetists to be a nation in its own right) and promoting Venetian culture, language and history. This was the background from which Liga Veneta emerged in 1980. In the 1990s and 2000s other Venetist parties (the Union of the Venetian People, the Veneto Autonomous Region Movement, Lega Autonomia Veneta, Liga Veneta Repubblica, North-East Project, etc.) emerged, but they never touched the popularity of Liga Veneta, which was a founding member of Lega Nord in 1991. Some Venetists have campaigned for federal reform and/or autonomy, others (notably including the Venetian National Party, the Party of the Venetians, Veneto State, Venetian Independence, Veneto First, Plebiscito.eu, Venetian Left, Independence We Veneto and We Are Veneto) for outright independence.
The Regional Government is led by the President of Veneto and composed of the President and ten Ministers (Assessori), including a Vice President.
|President||Luca Zaia||Liga Veneta|
|Vice President||Elisa De Berti||Liga Veneta|
|Minister of Legal Affairs, Public Works, Infrastructures and Transports||Elisa De Berti||Liga Veneta|
|Minister of Planning, Budget, Patrimony and Local Government||Francesco Calzavara||Liga Veneta|
|Minister of Health, Social Affairs and Social Programs||Manuela Lanzarin||Liga Veneta|
|Minister of Economic Development, Energy and Special Status for Venice||Roberto Marcato||Liga Veneta|
|Minister of EU Programs, Agriculture, Tourism and International Trade||Federico Caner||Liga Veneta|
|Minister of Education, Formation, Labour and Equal Opportunities||Elena Donazzan||Brothers of Italy|
|Minister of Environment, Climate and Civil Protection||Gianpaolo Bottacin||Liga Veneta|
|Minister of Culture, City Planning, Security, Hunting and Fishing||Cristiano Corazzari||Liga Veneta|
|Governments of Veneto|
|Tomelleri I||Angelo Tomelleri||DC||DC||Paolo Tartari||DC||1970-1971||I Legislature|
|Tomelleri II||Angelo Tomelleri||DC||DC||Paolo Tartari||DC||1971-1972|
|Feltrin||Piero Feltrin||DC||DC||Paolo Tartari||DC||1972-1973|
|Tomelleri III||Angelo Tomelleri||DC||DC||Marino Cortese||DC||1973-1975|
|Tomelleri IV||Angelo Tomelleri||DC||DC-PRI||Giancarlo Gambaro||DC||1975-1977||II Legislature|
|Tomelleri V||Angelo Tomelleri||DC||DC||Marino Cortese||DC||1977-1980|
|Bernini I||Carlo Bernini||DC||DC-PSDI[a]||Marino Cortese||DC||1980-1985||III Legislature|
|Bernini II||Carlo Bernini||DC||DC-PSI-PSDI-PLI||Umberto Carraro||PSI||1985-1989||IV Legislature|
|Cremonese I||Gianfranco Cremonese||DC||DC-PSI-PSDI-PLI||Umberto Carraro||PSI||1989-1990|
|Cremonese II||Gianfranco Cremonese||DC||DC-PSI-PRI-PSDI||Amalia Sartori||PSI||1990-1992||V Legislature|
|Frigo||Franco Frigo||DC||DC-PSI-FdV||Renzo Burro||PSI||1992-1993|
|Pupillo||Giuseppe Pupillo||PDS||DC-PDS[b]-PSI-FdV-UPV||Carlo Alberto Tesserin||DC||1993-1994|
|Bottin||Aldo Bottin||PPI||PPI[c]-LV-FI[d]-UPV-PLI-CPA-LP||Gian Paolo Gobbo||LV||1994-1995|
|Galan I||Giancarlo Galan||FI||FI-AN-CDU[e]-CCD||Bruno Canella||AN||1995-2000||VI Legislature|
|Galan II||Giancarlo Galan||FI||FI-LV-AN-CDU[f]-CCD[f]||Fabio Gava||FI||2000-2005||VII Legislature|
|Galan III||Giancarlo Galan||FI||FI[g]-LV-AN[g]-UDC-NPSI||Luca Zaia / Franco Manzato||LV||2005-2010||VIII Legislature|
|Zaia I||Luca Zaia||LV||LV-PdL[h]||Marino Zorzato||PdL||2010-2015||IX Legislature|
|Zaia II||Luca Zaia||LV||LV-FI[i]||Gianluca Forcolin||LV||2015-2020||X Legislature|
|Zaia III||Luca Zaia||LV||LV-FdI||Elisa De Berti||LV||2020-present||XI Legislature|
Source: Region of Veneto
The Regional Council of Veneto (Consiglio Regionale del Veneto) is composed of 51 members. 49 councillors are elected in provincial constituencies by proportional representation using the largest remainder method with a Droop quota and open lists, while the remaining two are the elected President and the candidate for President who comes second. The winning coalition wins a bonus of seats in order to make sure the elected President has a majority in the Council.
The Council is elected for a five-year term, but, if the President suffers a vote of no confidence, resigns or dies, under the simul stabunt, simul cadent (literally: "they will stand together or they will fall together") clause introduced in 1999, also the Council is dissolved and a snap election is called.
|Distribution of Seats in the Regional Council|
|Zaia for President[a]||Alberto Villanova||23||18|
|Liga Veneta-Lega||Giuseppe Pan||10||13|
|Democratic Party||Giacomo Possamai||6||6|
|Brothers of Italy||Raffaele Speranzon||5||5|
|Forza Italia||Elisa Venturini||2||2|
|Five Star Movement||Erika Baldin||1||1|
|Venetian Autonomy List||Tomas Piccinini||1||1|
|Veneto We Want||Elena Ostanel||1||1|
|Green Europe||Cristina Guarda||1||1|
|Mixed Group[b]||Stefano Valdegamberi||1||3|
All the seven provinces, but especially Vicenza, Verona and Padua, were long Christian Democratic heartlands. In the early 1990s, when the Venetian and Italian party systems experienced huge realignments, Treviso, Vicenza and Verona became strongholds of Liga Veneta-Lega Nord, while in Padua, the region's most populated, Forza Italia/The People of Freedom/Forza Italia was the dominant political force; only two provinces, Venice and Rovigo, have traditionally been the powerbases of the centre-left and, more recently, the Democratic Party, while Belluno is a swing province. In the 2015 regional election Liga Veneta came largely first in each and every province.
Since 2014 provinces have lost many powers to the region and the municipalities, and, contextually, provincial presidents have been elected by mayors and municipal councillors, whose votes are weighted according to the population of their municipalities. In some cases, elected Presidents represent bipartisan or trans-party coalitions. For instance, Enoch Soranzo was elected in Padua thanks to the decisive support of the Democratic Party, while the majority of his party, Liga Veneta, had endorsed another candidate, and Achille Variati was endorsed both by the Democrats and Forza Italia in Vicenza. In 2015 the Province of Venice was replaced by the Metropolitan City of Venice and the mayor of Venice, Luigi Brugnaro, was sworn in as metropolitan mayor too.
|Province of Padua||936,887||Fabio Bui||Democratic Party||2018|
|Province of Verona||922,383||Manuel Scalzotto||Liga Veneta||2018|
|Province of Treviso||885,447||Stefano Marcon||Liga Veneta||2016|
|Province of Vicenza||867,314||Fabio Rucco||Independent (Brothers of Italy)||2018|
|Province of Venice
Metropolitan City of Venice
|Independent (Forza Italia)||2015|
|Province of Rovigo||240,540||Ivan Dall'Ara||Independent (Forza Italia)||2018|
|Province of Belluno||206,856||Roberto Padrin||Independent (Democratic Party)||2018|
Twenty-seven comuni of Veneto have more than 25,000 inhabitants.
Eleven are controlled by Liga Veneta, five by the Democratic Party, four by Forza Italia and one by the Five Star Movement. Six mayors are formally non-party independents: three of these are supported by Liga Veneta and Forza Italia, another by the Democratic Party and the remaining two by local independent coalitions.
|Venice (list)||263,352||Luigi Brugnaro||Independent (Forza Italia)||2020|
|Verona (list)||258,765||Federico Sboarina||Independent (Forza Italia)||2017|
|Padua (list)||210,401||Sergio Giordani||Independent (Democratic Party)||2017|
|Vicenza (list)||112,953||Francesco Rucco||Independent (Brothers of Italy)||2018|
|Treviso (list)||83,731||Mario Conte||Liga Veneta||2018|
|Rovigo (list)||51,867||Edoardo Gaffeo||Democratic Party||2019|
|Chioggia||49,706||Alessandro Ferro||Five Star Movement||2016|
|Bassano del Grappa||43,372||Elena Pavan||Liga Veneta||2019|
|San Donà di Piave||41,778||Andrea Cereser||Democratic Party||2018|
|Schio||39,355||Valter Orsi||Independent (ex-Liga Veneta)||2019|
|Belluno (list)||35,870||Jacopo Massaro||Independent (ex-Democratic Party)||2017|
|Mira||38,575||Marco Dori||Democratic Party||2017|
|Conegliano||34,891||Fabio Chies||Forza Italia||2017|
|Villafranca di Verona||33,246||Roberto Dall'Oca||Forza Italia||2018|
|Castelfranco Veneto||33,234||Stefano Marcon||Liga Veneta||2020|
|Montebelluna||33,194||Marzio Favero||Liga Veneta||2016|
|Vittorio Veneto||28,232||Antonio Miatto||Liga Veneta||2019|
|Spinea||27,927||Martina Vesnaver||Liga Veneta||2019|
|Mogliano Veneto||27,659||Davide Bortolato||Liga Veneta||2019|
|Mirano||27,045||Maria Rosa Pavanello||Democratic Party||2017|
|Valdagno||26,234||Giancarlo Acerbi||Democratic Party||2019|
|Jesolo||26,122||Valerio Zoggia||Forza Italia||2017|
|Arzignano||25,844||Alessia Bevilacqua||Liga Veneta||2019|
|Albignasego||25,577||Filippo Giacinti||Forza Italia||2016|
|Legnago||25,351||Graziano Lorenzetti||Liga Veneta||2019|
|Portogruaro||25,142||Florio Favero||Liga Veneta||2020|
|San Giovanni Lupatoto||25,066||Attilio Gastaldello||Liga Veneta||2016|
The latest regional election took place on 20-21 September 2020.
Luca Zaia of Liga Veneta-Lega was re-elected President by a landslide 76.8% of the vote, while his main rival Arturo Lorenzoni stopped at 15.7%. Liga Veneta, which ran an official party list and a list named after Zaia, was confirmed the largest in the region with a combined 61.5% of the vote. The Democratic Party came second with 11.9% and the Brothers of Italy third with 9.6%. The total score of Venetist parties was 65.6%, the highest ever.
|Luca Zaia||1,883,959||76.79||1||Zaia for President||916,087||44.57||23|
|League Salvini - Venetian League||347,832||16.92||9|
|Brothers of Italy||196,310||9.55||5|
|Venetian Autonomy List||48,932||2.38||1|
|Arturo Lorenzoni||385,768||15.72||1||Democratic Party||244,881||11.92||6|
|Veneto We Want||41,275||2.01||1|
|More Veneto in Europe - Volt||14,246||0.69||-|
|Enrico Cappelletti||79,662||3.25||-||Five Star Movement||55,281||2.69||1|
|Paolo Girotto||21,679||0.88||-||3V Movement||14,916||0.73||-|
|Antonio Guadagnini||20,502||0.84||-||Party of Venetians||19,756||0.96||-|
|Paolo Benvegnù||18,529||0.76||-||Solidarity Environment Work||11,846||0.58||-|
|Daniela Sbrollini||15,198||0.62||-||Italia Viva - PSI - PRI||12,426||0.60||-|
|Patrizia Bertelle||14,518||0.59||-||Veneto Ecology Solidarity||9,061||0.44||-|
|Simonetta Rubinato||13,703||0.56||-||Veneto for the Autonomies||12,028||0.59||-|
|Total candidates||2,453,518||100.00||2||Total parties||2,055,173||100.00||49|
|Source: Ministry of the Interior|
The centre-right coalition (48.1%), dominated by the Lega (Liga Veneta), obtained a resounding victory, being largely ahead of the Five Star Movement (24.4%) and the centre-left coalition (20.3%). The Lega (32.2%) was largely the largest party, followed by the Five Star Movement (24.4%), the Democratic Party (16.7%) and Forza Italia (10.6%). Under the new electoral system, which re-introduced single-seat constituencies, the centre-right won all such constituencies.
|Centre-right coalition||Lega (incl. Liga Veneta)||918,985||32.2||11||1,373,372||48.1||12||23|
|Forza Italia (incl. VpA)||302,879||10.6||3||6||9|
|Brothers of Italy||119,770||4.2||2||1||3|
|Us with Italy||31,738||1.1||-||-||-|
|Five Star Movement||696,741||24.4||8||696,741||24.4||-||8|
|Centre-left coalition||Democratic Party||477,025||16.7||7||579,897||20.3||-||7|
|Popular Civic List||11,294||0.4||-||-||-|
|Free and Equal||77,623||2.7||-||77,623||2.7||-||-|
|The People of Family||30,233||1.1||-||30,233||1.1||-||-|
|Casa Pound Italy||28,078||1.0||-||28,078||1.0||-||-|
|Centre-right coalition||Lega (incl. Liga Veneta)||839,586||31.8||5||1,272,555||48.2||4||9|
|Forza Italia (incl. VpA)||286,906||10.9||2||3||5|
|Brothers of Italy||113,108||4.3||1||1||2|
|Us with Italy||32,955||1.2||-||1||1|
|Five Star Movement||647,960||24.5||4||647,960||24.5||-||4|
|Centre-left coalition||Democratic Party||450,230||17.0||3||539,398||20.4||-||3|
|Popular Civic List||9,489||0.4||-||-||-|
|Free and Equal||66,813||2.5||-||66,813||2.5||-||-|
|The People of Family||28,593||1.1||-||28,593||1.1||-||-|
|Casa Pound Italy||22,619||0.9||-||22,619||0.9||-||-|