Italian Left

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Italian Left
Sinistra Italiana
Secretary Nicola Fratoianni
President Laura Lauri
Founded 19 February 2017 (2017-02-19)
Merger of Left Ecology Freedom
Future to the Left
Venetian Left
minor groups
Headquarters Via Arenula, 29
00186 Rome
Newspaper Left
Membership (2017) 19,346[1]
Ideology Democratic socialism[2]
Green politics
Political position Left-wing
National affiliation Free and Equal
European affiliation Party of the European Left (observer)
International affiliation none
European Parliament group GUE/NGL (1)
S&D (1)
Colours      Red
Chamber of Deputies
3 / 630
1 / 315
European Parliament
2 / 73
10 / 897

Italian Left (Italian: Sinistra Italiana, SI) is a left-wing political party in Italy.

SI was launched in November 2015 as a parliamentary group in the Chamber of Deputies (full name: Italian Left – Left Ecology Freedom), mainly including Left Ecology Freedom (SEL), dissidents from the Democratic Party (see Future to the Left) and splinters from the Five Star Movement.[3] At its launch, SI included 32 deputies,[4] soon followed by 8 senators (sub-group in the Mixed Group of the Senate formed in February 2016) and 2 MEPs. SI was officially founded as a full-fledged party in February 2017, after that SEL chose to dissolve into it in December 2016.

The party is led by Nicola Fratoianni. Notable members include Nichi Vendola (former leader of SEL), Loredana De Petris (fr; it), Stefano Fassina, and Sergio Cofferati. In the aftermath of its founding congress, 18 deputies left the party, leaving it with 13 deputies, 8 senators and 2 MEPs: 17 deputies, led by former group leader Arturo Scotto (fr; it), joined the brand-new Democrats and Progressives party, while Laura Boldrini (President of the Chamber of Deputies) defected to the Mixed Group.

In late 2017 the party was a founding member of Free and Equal, a left-wing joint list for the 2018 general election.



In June 2015 Stefano Fassina, a former deputy minister, left the Democratic Party (PD) over disagreements with Matteo Renzi, PD leader and Prime Minister.[5] In doing this, he was followed by his long-time ally Monica Gregori (it).[6] In July, during a convention, Fassina launched Future to the Left (FaS), an incubator of a new left-leaning party, with other movements and breakaway groups, such as Possible (P), and Left Ecology Freedom (SEL).

In November one senator (Corradino Mineo)[7] and three more deputies (Alfredo D'Attorre (it), Carlo Galli (es; it) and Vincenzo Folino (it))[8][9] left the party in protest at Renzi. D'Attorre, who holds a doctorate in philosophy from the Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies,[10] wrote a manifesto for a new "labour" party, which was signed also by the other five MPs and, among other things, read: "The genetic mutation of the PD, born as central force of the Italian centre-left, is unfortunately already completed. The Renzi experience and the introduced mutations won't be a parenthesis. They have already altered in a irreversible way the perception of the PD and its function in the collective imagination".[11] Subsequently, a parliamentary group under the banner of Italian Left was formed in the Chamber of Deputies, whose core was formed by SEL.[12][13]

Road to the new party[edit]

Italian Left rally during the campaign for 2016 constitutional referendum.

In February 2016 SI held its constituent assembly in Rome.[14][15][16] Consequently, SI was established as a sub-group within the Mixed Group in the Senate: five senators of SEL, two dissidents from the Five Star Movement (Fabrizio Bocchino (it) and Francesco Campanella (it)) and one former Democrat (Mineo) joined,[17] while two SEL senators (including Sardinian nationalist Luciano Uras (fr; it))[18] refused to join and left their party altogether.[19]

Several lists named after SI participated in the 2016 local elections. The party did particularly well in Sesto Fiorentino, a medium-sized city in the metropolitan area of Florence, where it won 17.5% of the vote and its candidate for mayor was elected in the run-off with 65.5%, by beating his Democratic opponent.[20][21]

In December 2016 SEL was dissolved, in order to merge it into SI in early 2017.[22]

Founding congress[edit]

In February 2017 SI was officially founded and Nicola Fratoianni was elected as its first secretary.[23][24][25]

Contextually, SI leader in the Chamber of Deputies Arturo Scotto (it), who was originally a candidate for the leadership,[26] Massimiliano Smeriglio (it), D'Attorre, Galli and Folino led a splinter group into the Democratic and Progressive Movement (MDP), a party founded by left-wing splinters of the PD.[27][28][29]

In March 2017 SI welcomed the four deputies of Possible (P) in its group in the Chamber.[30][31][32] In April Campanella left the party,[33] leaving it with 7 senators.

On 24 June 2017 SI was accepted into the Party of the European Left as an observer member.[34]

Free and Equal[edit]

On 3 December 2017 SI was a founding member, along with the MDP and P, of Free and Equal (LeU), the left-wing joint list for the 2018 general election, which chose the President of the Senate and former anti-Mafia prosecutor Pietro Grasso as its leader and candidate for Prime Minister.[35]


The party's founding members were:

Party Main ideology Leader Ref
Left Ecology Freedom (SEL) Democratic socialism Nichi Vendola [36]
Future to the Left (FaS) Social democracy Stefano Fassina [37]
Venetian Left (SV) Communism Pietrangelo Pettenò [38]

Along these, some youth organisations (including ACT! Agire Costruire Trasformare[39] and TILT[40]), local groups and individuals have joined SI.

The latter include Sergio Cofferati MEP, Alfredo D'Attorre, Corradino Mineo, Andrea Ranieri (it) and others from the Democratic Party; Fabrizio Bocchino from the Five Star Movement; Luca Casarini, Luciana Castellina, Maurizio Landini and Curzio Maltese (de; fr; it; la; pl) MEP.


SI's ideology is a mix of democratic socialism, social democracy and anti-austerity issues.

In his manifesto, D'Attorre wrote that the new party will need to "go beyond the separation between reformists and radicals" and later explained that SI will be Keynesian and opposed to neoliberalism. The coalition's economics adviser is Joseph Stiglitz, a well-known American economist and winner of the Nobel prize in economics, who had already been involved with the Greek Syriza, the Spanish Podemos and the British Labour Party.[41]

Fassina has also proposed a "controlled disintegration of the Eurozone".[42]

Electoral results[edit]

Italian Parliament[edit]

Chamber of Deputies
Election year # of
overall votes
% of
overall vote
# of
overall seats won
+/– Leader
2018 into Free and Equal 3.4
3 / 630
Nicola Fratoianni
Senate of the Republic
Election year # of
overall votes
% of
overall vote
# of
overall seats won
+/– Leader
2018 into Free and Equal 3.3
1 / 315
Nicola Fratoianni

Regional Councils[edit]

Region Last election # of
overall votes
% of
overall vote
# of
overall seats won
Aosta Valley 2013 N/A N/A
0 / 35
Piedmont 2014 40,873 (#9) 2.1 (as SEL)
2 / 50
Increase 1
Lombardy 2018 into Free and Equal into Free and Equal
0 / 80
South Tyrol 2013 with the Greens with the Greens
0 / 35
Trentino 2013 4,287 (#11) 1.8 (as SEL)
0 / 35
Veneto 2015 into New Veneto into New Veneto
0 / 51
Friuli-Venezia Giulia 2013 17,764 (#7) 4.5 (as SEL)
3 / 49
Increase 3
Emilia-Romagna 2014 38,845 (#6) 3.2 (as SEL)
2 / 50
Increase 1
Liguria 2015 into Network to the Left into Network to the Left
1 / 31
Tuscany 2015 into Tuscany to the Left into Tuscany to the Left
2 / 41
Increase 2
Marche 2015 into Other Marche into Other Marche
0 / 31
Decrease 1
Umbria 2015 9,010 (#9) 2.6 (as SEL)
1 / 20
Increase 1
Lazio 2013 103,692 (#7) 3.7 (as SEL)
3 / 51
Decrease 1
Abruzzo 2014 16,151 (#11) 2.4 (as SEL)
1 / 31
Increase 1
Molise 2013 5,015 (#14) 3.0 (as SEL)
1 / 21
Campania 2015 into Left at Work into Left at Work
0 / 51
Decrease 2
Apulia 2015 108,920 (#6) 6.5 (as We to Left)
4 / 51
Decrease 7
Basilicata 2013 12,204 (#7) 5.2 (as SEL)
1 / 21
Calabria 2014 into The Left into The Left
1 / 30
Increase 1
Sicily 2017 100,583 (#9) (with MDP) 5.2 (with MDP)
1 / 70
Increase 1
Sardinia 2014 35,376 (#5) 5.2 (as SEL)
4 / 60
Increase 3




  1. ^ "Assemblee Congressuali di Sinistra Italiana – Aderenti e Delegati per Provincia" (PDF). 
  2. ^ a b Nordsieck, Wolfram (2018). "Italy". Parties and Elections in Europe. Retrieved 21 May 2018. 
  3. ^ Una nuova sinistra, non una "cosa rossa"
  4. ^ " - XVII Legislatura - Deputati e Organi Parlamentari - Composizione gruppi Parlamentari". 
  5. ^ Fassina dice addio al Pd: "Non ci sono le condizioni per continuare"
  6. ^ Fassina, addio al Pd: "Nuovo soggetto politico con Civati e Cofferati"
  7. ^ Corradino Mineo lascia il gruppo Pd: "Contro di me inaccettabile processo sommario"
  8. ^ D'Attorre, Galli e Folino lasciano il Pd: "Non c'è più dialettica nel partito"
  9. ^ Pd: i deputati Galli, Folino e D’Attorre lasciano il partito. “Ora gruppo con Sel, ma non chiamateci ‘Cosa rossa'”
  10. ^ Alfredo D'Attorre, ritratto del mite "secchione" travolto dal turborenzismo
  11. ^ Alfredo D'Attorre esce dal Pd. Il documento scritto con Fassina e gli altri: "Con Renzi il partito trasformato nel suo ufficio stampa"
  12. ^ Nasce 'Sinistra italiana', nuovo gruppo di 31 deputati. Fassina: "Siamo alternativi al liberismo da Happy Days di Renzi"
  13. ^ Si chiamerà "Sinistra italiana": domani Sel e gli ex Pd battezzano il nuovo gruppo 'anti-Renzi'
  14. ^ Cosmopolitica, iniziata la costituente di Sinistra italiana
  15. ^ Per ora è "Sinistra Italiana"
  16. ^ Cosmopolitica, la prima assemblea di Sinistra italiana: "Dal 2 al 4 dicembre il congresso fondativo"
  17. ^ " - Senato della Repubblica - Variazioni nei Gruppi parlamentari". 
  18. ^ "Sel divisa tra svolta sovranista e Sinistra italiana: geografia di una guerra -". 17 November 2015. 
  19. ^ "il manifesto". 
  20. ^ "Ballottaggi in Toscana: Pd ko. A Sesto stravince Falchi, Grosseto al centrodestra". 19 June 2016. 
  21. ^ "Comune di Sesto Fiorentino - Toscana - Elezioni Comunali - Risultati - Ballottaggio - 5 giugno 2016". 
  22. ^ "Vendola traghetta Sel nella "Sinistra italiana"". 
  23. ^ "Sinistra Italiana elegge Fratoianni: "Siamo la sinistra che fa il suo mestiere"". 
  24. ^ "Sinistra Italiana, Nicola Fratoianni eletto segretario: "Scissione? Se minoranza dem vota fiducia a Gentiloni, no al dialogo" - Il Fatto Quotidiano". 19 February 2017. 
  25. ^ "Congresso SI, eletto Fratoianni segretario: "Dialogo con gli scissionisti Pd se non votano fiducia a governo"". 19 February 2017. 
  26. ^ "Sinistra italiana, corsa a due per la segreteria: Scotto sfida Fratoianni". 23 January 2017. 
  27. ^ Stefanoni, Franco. "Ecco il nome degli ex Pd: Articolo 1 Movimento dei democratici e progressisti". 
  28. ^ "«Democratici e progressisti» il nuovo nome degli ex Pd. Speranza: lavoro è nostra priorità". 
  29. ^ "Nasce il Movimento democratici e progressisti". 
  30. ^ "Sinistra Italiana e Possibile insieme alla Camera. Ma il primo scoglio è Civati capogruppo". 10 March 2017. 
  31. ^ "Possibile e Sinistra Italiana. Dopo i gruppi, la lista unitaria - Left". 9 March 2017. 
  32. ^ "il manifesto". 
  33. ^ "Francesco Campanella lascia Sinistra italiana". 
  34. ^ "IL PARTITO DELLA SINISTRA EUROPEA accoglie come osservatore SINISTRA ITALIANA". L'Altra Europa con Tsipras. 2017-06-24. Retrieved 2017-06-25. 
  35. ^ "Liberi e uguali, Grasso: 'Ecco la nuova sinistra' - Politica". 3 December 2017. 
  36. ^ Cosmopolitica, Fratoianni: congresso fondativo il 2/3/4 dicembre. E’ la fine della stagione degli accordi e dei cartelli elettorali
  38. ^ Sinistra Veneta ha condiviso un link.
  39. ^
  40. ^ Mapi Pizzolante a Cosmopolitica
  41. ^ Sinistra:tra i consulenti anche Stiglitz
  42. ^ European 'alliance of national liberation fronts' emerges to avenge Greek defeat

External links[edit]