National List
Lista Nazionale
LeaderBenito Mussolini
Founded1924
Dissolved1926
Preceded byNational Bloc
IdeologyItalian Fascism
Italian nationalism
National conservatism
Social conservatism
Anti-socialism
Anti-communism
Political positionFar-right
Colours  Black

The National List (Italian: Lista Nazionale) also known as Listone (literally "Big List") was a Fascist and nationalist coalition of political parties in Italy established for the 1924 general election, and led by Benito Mussolini, Prime Minister of Italy and leader of the National Fascist Party.[1]

History

Background

In the night between 27 and 28 October 1922, about 30,000 Fascist blackshirts gathered in Rome to demand the resignation of liberal Prime Minister Luigi Facta and the appointment of a new Fascist government with Benito Mussolini at its head. On the morning of 28 October, King Victor Emmanuel III, who according to the Albertine Statute held the supreme military power, refused the government request to declare martial law, which led to Facta's resignation. The King then handed over power to Mussolini (who stayed in his headquarters in Milan during the talks) by asking him to form a new government. The King's controversial decision has been explained by historians as a combination of delusions and fears; Mussolini enjoyed wide support in the military and among the industrial and agrarian elites, while the King and the conservative establishment were afraid of a possible civil war and ultimately thought they could use Mussolini to restore law and order in the country, but failed to foresee the danger of a totalitarian evolution.[2]

As Prime Minister, the first years of Mussolini's rule were characterized by a right-wing coalition government composed of Fascists, nationalists, liberals, and two Catholic clerics from the People's Party. The Fascists made up a small minority in his original governments. Mussolini's domestic goal was the eventual establishment of a totalitarian state with himself as supreme leader (Il Duce), a message that was articulated by the Fascist newspaper Il Popolo d'Italia, which was now edited by Mussolini's brother, Arnaldo. To that end, Mussolini obtained from the legislature dictatorial powers for one year (legal under the Italian constitution of the time). He favored the complete restoration of state authority, with the integration of the Italian Fasces of Combat into the armed forces (the foundation in January 1923 of the Voluntary Militia for National Security) and the progressive identification of the party with the state. In political and social economy, he passed legislation that favored the wealthy industrial and agrarian classes (privatizations, liberalizations of rent laws and dismantlement of the unions).

Mussolini in the early 1920s
Mussolini in the early 1920s

In June 1923, the government passed the Acerbo Law, which transformed Italy into a single national constituency. It also granted a two-thirds majority of the seats in Parliament to the party or group of parties that received at least 25% of the votes.[3] This law applied in the elections of 6 April 1924. The national alliance, consisting of Fascists, most of the old Liberals and others, won 64% of the vote.

1924 election

Main article: 1924 Italian general election

Mussolini called for new election in April 1924. His Fascist Party formed a list, composed mainly by fascist members but also by some liberals like former Prime Ministers Vittorio Emanuele Orlando and Antonio Salandra, by politicians form the Italian Nationalist Association (ANI) like its leader Enrico Corradini, some Christian democrats expelled from the Italian People's Party and other right-wing forces.

In the 1924 general election, the National List became the first party in the country with 65.7% of votes and 374 seats in the Chamber of Deputies. The List was however disbanded in 1926 when Mussolini's government banned all the non-fascist parties, above all his former allies Liberals and the Nationalists.

Composition

Party Main ideology Leader/s
National Fascist Party Fascism Benito Mussolini
Italian People's Party Christian democracy Alcide De Gasperi (dissident)
Italian Liberal Party Conservative liberalism Giovanni Giolitti
Democratic Liberal Party Social liberalism Vittorio Emanuele Orlando

Electoral results

Chamber of Deputies
Election year Votes % Seats +/− Leader
1924 4,653,488 (1st) 65.7
375 / 535
Benito Mussolini

Symbols

See also

References

  1. ^ Nohlen, D & Stöver, P (2010) Elections in Europe: A data handbook, p1047 ISBN 978-3-8329-5609-7
  2. ^ Lyttelton, Adrian (2009). The Seizure of Power: Fascism in Italy, 1919–1929. New York: Routledge. pp. 75–77. ISBN 978-0-415-55394-0.
  3. ^ Boffa, Federico (1 February 2004). "Italy and the Antitrust Law: an Efficient Delay?" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 March 2009. Retrieved 5 October 2008. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)