- Giorgia Meloni became Italy’s first female prime minister over 100 days ago and is now one of the most popular world leaders, surpassing President Joe Biden’s popularity among American citizens, according to a global Morning Consult survey.
- Meloni has an approval rating of 53%, which makes her the sixth most popular leader, while Biden sits at 41% approval, according to the survey.
- “What should be stressed is that she is a politician. Trustworthy politicians want to last, and therefore, they never want to exaggerate. They try to be, in a way, responsible. They respond to the wishes of their voters. They respond somewhat to do what they promised and then try to adjust it. From this point of view, she is doing much better than the previous administration,” Professor Gianfranco Pasquino told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
Giorgia Meloni became Italy’s first female prime minister over 100 days ago and is now one of the most popular world leaders, outperforming President Joe Biden’s approval rating, according to a global Morning Consult survey ranking popularity.
Meloni has an approval rating of 53% among Italians, which makes her the sixth most popular leader, surpassing Biden’s 41%, according to Morning Consult. Although expectations for Meloni were low heading into office, the Italian leader has successfully responded to voters’ wishes, experts told the Daily Caller News Foundation. (RELATED: Giorgia Meloni Poised To Become Italy’s Prime Minister)
“The first thing I will say is that the expectations were very low,” said University for Foreigners of Perugia political science professor Cecilia Emma Sottilotta, who spoke with the DCNF. “There was much alarm, right? Before the election, and right after the election, everybody was like, ‘Neo-fascist government,’ whatever. What is going to happen? There was a lot of insecurity and uncertainty about, for instance, what she would do visiting NATO.”
Meloni delivered a 2019 speech highlighting individual identity and traditional values while criticizing the establishment for trying to create the “perfect consumer,” which received praise from Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene. However, this rhetoric and her campaign slogan, “God, country, and family,” led many liberal media outlets, like The Washington Post or the Guardian, to suggest the Italian leader is mirroring rhetoric used by dictator Benito Mussolini.
In addition, President Joe Biden insinuated her rise to power could threaten democratic elections in the U.S.
“On a social level, this government has not yet done something to help migrants or members of the LGBTQ+ community. Instead, it is more concentrated on creating a type of government that focuses on a stronger central power which is a possible reality thanks to great majority support,” says professor of International Political Economy of King’s College Leila Simona Talani in an interview with the DCNF.
Thanks to the government suspension of fixed gas charges for three months, the national gas bill went down from costing $1.27 per cubic meter in December 2022 to $0.75 in January 2023, according to the Local. The new government has had to work to control the rise of gas bills that affects many Italians due to the Ukraine war and the country’s dependence on Russian energy.
On COVID-19, Meloni followed a different approach than her predecessor Mario Draghi by lifting vaccination mandates, reintegrating healthcare workers back into the workforce who opposed vaccinating and freezing all COVID-19 fines, according to Fox News.
Meloni had the advantage of making minor adjustments to a strict COVID-19 approach set by Draghi, emphasizing an idea of nationalism and a “cohesive national community” shared by many Italians, Professor Emeritus of Political Science at the University of Bologna Gianfranco Pasquino told the DCNF.
A main concern about this new government is the possible friction between Meloni and the European Union, according to Vox. Meloni gained the EU’s trust by striking a deal in Brussels last December on a budget of $200 billion and, at the end of January, a deal with Libya’s Prime Minister Abdulhamid al-Dbeibah of $8 billion to bolster natural gas supplies for EU states.
“What should be stressed is that she is a politician,” Pasquino told the DCNF, “Trustworthy politicians want to last, and therefore, they never want to exaggerate. They try to be, in a way, responsible. They respond to the wishes of their voters. They respond somewhat to do what they promised and then try to adjust it. From this point of view, she is doing much better than the previous administration.”
“I think that the real risk is that this government is not equipped to make any positive change in the country if we are able or willing to make the structural reforms and changes that the country would need to stop the decline,” Sottilotta said.
The latest Morning Consult data was collected between Feb. 8-14 among adult residents in each country with variations in sample size and margin of error. For example, 45,000 U.S. residents were surveyed with a 1.4% margin of error.
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