1983 Italian general election

← 1979 26 June 1983 1987 →

All 630 seats in the Chamber of Deputies  · 315 seats in the Senate
Registered44,526,357 (C· 37,603,817 (S)
Turnout39,188,182 (C· 88.0% (Decrease2.6 pp)
33,402,139 (S· 88.8% (Decrease1.9 pp)
  Majority party Minority party Third party
 
Ciriaco De Mita (X).jpg
Enrico Berlinguer.jpg
Bettino Craxi 2.jpg
Leader Ciriaco De Mita Enrico Berlinguer Bettino Craxi
Party Christian Democracy Communist Party Socialist Party
Leader since 5 May 1982 17 March 1972 15 July 1976
Leader's seat Benevento (C) Rome (C) Milan (C)
Seats won 225 (C) / 120 (S) 198 (C) / 107 (S) 73 (C) / 38 (S)
Seat change Decrease37 (C) / Decrease18 (S) Decrease3 (C) / Decrease2 (S) Increase11 (C) / Increase6 (S)
Popular vote 12,153,081 (C)
10,077,204 (S)
11,032,318 (C)
9,577,071 (S)
4,223,362 (C)
3,539,593 (S)
Percentage 32.9% (C)
32.4% (S)
29.9% (C)
30.8% (S)
11.4% (C)
11.4% (S)
Swing Decrease5.4 pp (C)
Decrease5.9 pp (S)
Decrease0.5 pp (C)
Decrease0.7 pp (S)
Increase1.5 pp (C)
Increase1.0 pp (S)

  Fourth party Fifth party Sixth party
 
Giorgio Almirante 1979.jpg
Giovanni Spadolini 2.jpg
Pietro Longo IX Legislatura.jpg
Leader Giorgio Almirante Giovanni Spadolini Pietro Longo
Party Social Movement Republican Party Social Democratic Party
Leader since 29 June 1969[a] 23 September 1979 20 October 1978
Leader's seat Rome (C) Milan (S) Rome (C)
Seats won 42 (C) / 18 (S) 29 (C) / 10 (S) 23 (C) / 8 (S)
Seat change Increase12 (C) / Increase5 (S) Increase13 (C) / Increase4 (S) Increase3 (C) / Decrease1 (S)
Popular vote 2,511,487 (C)
2,283,524 (S)
1,874,512 (C)
1,452,279 (S)
1,508,234 (C)
1,184,936 (S)
Percentage 6.8% (C)
7.4% (S)
5.1% (C)
4.7% (S)
4.1% (C)
3.8% (S)
Swing Increase1.6 pp (C)
Increase1.7 pp (S)
Increase2.1 pp (C)
Increase1.3 pp (S)
Increase0.3 pp (C)
Decrease0.4 pp (S)

1983 Italian general election - Results.svg
Results of the election in the Chamber and Senate.

Prime Minister before election

Amintore Fanfani
Christian Democracy

Prime Minister after the election

Bettino Craxi
Socialist Party

The 1983 Italian general election was held in Italy on 26 June 1983.[1] The Pentaparty formula, the governative alliance between five centrist parties, caused unexpected problems to Christian Democracy. The alliance was fixed and universal, extended both to the national government and to the local administrations. Considering that the election result did not longer depend by the strength of the DC, but by the strength of the entire Pentapartito, centrist electors began to look at the Christian Democratic vote as not necessary to prevent a Communist success. More, voting for one of the four minor parties of the alliance was seen as a form of moderate protest against the government without giving advantages to the PCI. Other minor effects of this election were a reduction of the referendarian Radical Party and the appearance of some regional forces.

Electoral system

The pure party-list proportional representation had traditionally become the electoral system for the Chamber of Deputies. Italian provinces were united in 32 constituencies, each electing a group of candidates. At constituency level, seats were divided between open lists using the largest remainder method with Imperiali quota. Remaining votes and seats were transferred at national level, where they were divided using the Hare quota, and automatically distributed to best losers into the local lists.

For the Senate, 237 single-seat constituencies were established, even if the assembly had risen to 315 members. The candidates needed a landslide victory of two thirds of votes to be elected, a goal which could be reached only by the German minorities in South Tirol. All remained votes and seats were grouped in party lists and regional constituencies, where a D'Hondt method was used: inside the lists, candidates with the best percentages were elected.

Historical background

Rescue teams making their way through the rubble after the explosion in Bologna.
Rescue teams making their way through the rubble after the explosion in Bologna.

On 2 August 1980, a bomb killed 85 people and wounded more than 200 in Bologna. Known as the Bologna massacre, the blast destroyed a large portion of the city's railway station. This was found to be a fascist bombing, mainly organized by the NAR, who had ties with the Roman criminal organization Banda della Magliana. In the following days the central square of Bologna, Piazza Maggiore, hosted large-scale demonstrations of indignation and protest among the population, in which were not spared harsh criticism and protests addressed to government representatives, who attended the funerals of the victims celebrated in the San Petronio Basilica on 6 August.

In 1981 at a meeting of the Congress of the Italian Socialist Party (PSI), was officially launched a centrist political alliance called Pentapartito, when the Christian Democrat Arnaldo Forlani and Socialist Secretary Bettino Craxi signed an agreement with the "blessing" of Giulio Andreotti. Because the agreement was signed in a trailer, it was called the "pact of the camper." The pact was also called "CAF" for the initials of the signers, Craxi-Andreotti-Forlani. With this agreement, the DC party recognized the equal dignity of the so-called "secular parties" of the majority (i.e., the Socialists, Social Democrats, Liberals and Republicans) and also guaranteed an alternation of government (in fact, Giovanni Spadolini of the PRI and Bettino Craxi of the PSI became the first non-Christian Democrats to hold the Presidency of the Council). With the birth of the Pentapartito, the possibility of the growth of the majority toward the Italian Communist Party (PCI) was finally dismissed. The Christian Democrats remained the leaders of the coalition, and managed several times to prevent representatives of the secular parties from becoming President of the Councill.

Parties and leaders

Party Ideology Leader
Christian Democracy (DC) Christian democracy Ciriaco De Mita
Italian Communist Party (PCI) Eurocommunism Enrico Berlinguer
Italian Socialist Party (PSI) Social democracy Bettino Craxi
Italian Social Movement (MSI) Neo-fascism Giorgio Almirante
Italian Republican Party (PRI) Social liberalism Giovanni Spadolini
Italian Democratic Socialist Party (PSDI) Social democracy Pietro Longo
Italian Liberal Party (PLI) Conservative liberalism Valerio Zanone
Radical Party (PR) Radicalism Marco Pannella
Proletarian Democracy (DP) Trotskyism Mario Capanna

Results

The DC respected the pact of an alternance of leadership between the parties of the alliance and accepted the Socialist secretary, Bettino Craxi, as the new Prime Minister of Italy. The Christian Democrats hoped that their minor responsibility could drive away some popular discontent from their party. The Italian Socialist Party so arrived to the highest office of the government for the first time in history. Differently from the DC, which had an oligarchic structure, the PSI was strongly ruled by its secretary, so the Craxi's premiership resulted the longest one without any political crisis in post-war Italy, despite some international tensions with the United States about the Palestine Liberation Organization. Craxi formed a renewed government in 1986, but could not survive in 1987 to a dispute with DC's secretary Ciriaco De Mita, who was searching and effectively obtained an early national election, ruled by an electoral Christian Democratic government with old Amintore Fanfani as PM.

Chamber of Deputies

Summary of the 26 June 1983 Chamber of Deputies election results
Italian Chamber of Deputies, 1983.svg
Party Votes % Seats +/−
Christian Democracy (DC) 12,153,081 32.93 225 −37
Italian Communist Party (PCI) 11,032,318 29.89 198 −3
Italian Socialist Party (PSI) 4,223,362 11.44 73 +11
Italian Social Movement (MSI) 2,511,487 6.81 42 +12
Italian Republican Party (PRI) 1,874,512 5.08 29 +13
Italian Democratic Socialist Party (PSDI) 1,508,234 4.09 23 +3
Italian Liberal Party (PLI) 1,066,980 2.89 16 +7
Radical Party (PR) 809,810 2.19 11 −7
Proletarian Democracy (DP) 542,039 1.47 7 +7
Pensioners' National Party (PNP) 503,461 1.36 0 New
South Tyrolean People's Party (SVP) 184,940 0.50 3 −1
Venetian League (LV) 125,311 0.34 1 New
List for Trieste (LpT) 92,101 0.25 0 −1
Sardinian Action Party (PSd'Az) 91,923 0.25 1 +1
Aosta Valley (UVUVPDP) 26,086 0.08 1 ±0
Others 158,360 0.42 0 ±0
Invalid/blank votes 2,282,177
Total 39,188,182 100 630 ±0
Registered voters/turnout 44,526,357 88.01
Source: Ministry of the Interior
Popular vote
DC
32.93%
PCI
29.89%
PSI
11.44%
MSI
6.81%
PRI
5.08%
PSDI
4.09%
PLI
2.89%
PR
2.19%
DP
1.47%
PNP
1.36%
Others
1.84%
Seats
DC
35.71%
PCI
31.43%
PSI
11.59%
MSI
6.67%
PRI
4.60%
PSDI
3.65%
PLI
2.54%
PR
1.75%
DP
1.11%
Others
0.95%

Results by constituency

Constituency Total
seats
Seats won
DC PCI PSI MSI PRI PSDI PLI PR DP Others
Turin 36 9 12 4 2 3 2 2 1 1
Cuneo 14 6 4 1 1 1 1
Genoa 20 6 8 2 1 1 1 1
Milan 51 14 16 6 3 4 2 2 2 2
Como 20 8 5 2 1 1 1 1 1
Brescia 23 10 5 2 1 1 1 1 1 1
Mantua 7 3 3 1
Trentino 8 3 1 1 3
Verona 30 14 6 3 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
Venice 16 7 4 2 1 1 1
Udine 14 6 3 2 1 1 1
Bologna 26 5 13 2 1 2 1 1 1
Parma 20 5 10 2 1 1 1
Florence 16 4 9 2 1
Pisa 15 4 7 2 1 1
Siena 9 3 5 1
Ancona 17 6 7 2 1 1
Perugia 10 3 5 1 1
Rome 53 17 16 5 5 3 2 2 2 1
L'Aquila 14 7 5 1 1
Campobasso 4 3 1
Naples 42 14 11 5 6 1 2 1 1 1
Benevento 18 9 4 3 1 1
Bari 25 9 6 4 3 1 1 1
Lecce 20 8 5 3 2 1 1
Potenza 7 4 2 1
Catanzaro 23 9 6 4 2 1 1
Catania 27 11 6 4 3 1 1 1
Palermo 25 11 6 3 2 1 1 1
Cagliari 17 6 6 2 1 1 1
Aosta Valley 1 1
Trieste 2 1 1
Total 630 225 198 73 42 29 23 16 11 7 6

Senate of the Republic

Summary of the 26 June 1983 Senate of the Republic election results
Italian Senate, 1983.svg
Party Votes % Seats +/−
Christian Democracy (DC) 10,077,204 32.41 120 −18
Italian Communist Party (PCI) 9,577,071 30.81 107 −2
Italian Socialist Party (PSI) 3,539,593 11.39 38 +6
Italian Social Movement (MSI) 2,283,524 7.35 18 +5
Italian Republican Party (PRI) 1,452,279 4.67 10 +4
Italian Democratic Socialist Party (PSDI) 1,184,936 3.81 8 −1
Italian Liberal Party (PLI) 834,771 2.69 6 +4
Radical Party (PR) 548,229 1.76 1 −1
Pensioners' National Party (PNP) 370,756 1.19 0 New
Proletarian Democracy (DP) 327,750 1.05 0 New
South Tyrolean People's Party (SVP) 157,444 0.51 3 ±0
PLIPRI 127,504 0.41 1 ±0
PLIPRIPSDI 100,218 0.32 0 ±0
Venetian League (LV) 91,171 0.29 1 New
List for Trieste (LpT) 85,542 0.28 0 ±0
Sardinian Action Party (PSd'Az) 76,797 0.25 1 +1
PLIPSDI 72,298 0.23 0 ±0
For the Renewal of Molise 33,525 0.11 0 New
Aosta Valley (UVUVPDP) 26,547 0.09 1 ±0
Others 122,852 0.41 0 ±0
Invalid/blank votes 2,313,128
Total 33,402,139 100 315 ±0
Registered voters/turnout 37,603,817 88.83
Source: Ministry of the Interior
Popular vote
DC
32.41%
PCI
30.81%
PSI
11.39%
MSI
7.35%
PRI
4.67%
PSDI
3.81%
PLI
2.69%
PR
1.76%
PNP
1.19%
DP
1.05%
Others
2.87%
Seats
DC
38.10%
PCI
33.97%
PSI
12.06%
MSI
5.71%
PRI
3.17%
PSDI
2.54%
PLI
1.90%
PR
0.32%
Others
2.22%

Results by constituency

Constituency Total
seats
Seats won
DC PCI PSI MSI PRI PSDI PLI PR Others
Piedmont 24 7 8 3 1 2 1 2
Aosta Valley 1 1
Lombardy 48 17 15 6 2 3 2 2 1
Trentino-Alto Adige 7 3 1 3
Veneto 23 12 5 2 1 1 1 1
Friuli-Venezia Giulia 7 4 2 1
Liguria 10 4 5 1
Emilia-Romagna 21 6 12 2 1
Tuscany 19 6 10 2 1
Umbria 7 2 4 1
Marche 8 3 4 1
Lazio 27 9 9 3 3 1 1 1
Abruzzo 7 4 2 1
Molise 2 2
Campania 29 11 9 4 4 1 1
Apulia 20 8 6 3 3 1
Basilicata 7 4 2 1
Calabria 11 4 4 2 1
Sicily 26 10 6 4 3 1 1 1
Sardinia 8 4 3 1 1
Total 315 120 107 38 18 10 8 6 1 7

Maps

1983 Italian general election - Seat Distribution.svg
Seat distribution by constituency for the Chamber of Deputies (left) and Senate (right).

References

  1. ^ Dieter Nohlen & Philip Stöver (2010) Elections in Europe: A data handbook, p1048 ISBN 978-3-8329-5609-7
  1. ^ Almirante also served as secretary from 1948 to 1950.