Home News Mattarella’s speech: “Seven years for the common good”. And he quotes a letter from a professor to his students

Mattarella’s speech: “Seven years for the common good”. And he quotes a letter from a professor to his students

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It was a different message than usual. For the first time in the memory of the Republic, a president took the opportunity to give his best wishes to make a transparent gesture and offer his fellow citizens the balance of his work. Sergio Mattarella did it – especially in the finale – with emotional accents that are typical of farewell and do not reveal any intention of granting an “encore”, in case he was asked (only a part of the Democratic Party, for now, is thinking about it) . His concern seemed to be to leave a good memory among the citizens, which is usually accompanied by a hint of regret. In short, to conclude well with the applause. So much so that in the speech – rather short, 15 minutes in all – he avoided dwelling on the problems that everyone knows, of soliciting answers to Italy’s troubles, in short of projecting his gaze on the future because the gong is about to expire: it will not touch more to him to deal with, but to his successor. He now considers himself an ex. From now on and until the end of the mandate (February 3) Mattarella will avoid any gesture potentially capable of interfering in the choice of the “after”. He wants to keep out of it as much as possible. So press blackout: enough declarations, speeches and public ceremonies. On the Quirinale website, the President’s Agenda is completely empty.

The other unpublished message of Mattarella is that never in the past had a president so meticulously exposed, in front of an audience that exceeded 13 million spectators, what his functions are, signaled the essence of his duties, specified his own prerogatives according to the Constitution. A clarification was necessary to reiterate the correctness of certain choices that in moments of particular agitation (think of the birth of the first Conte government) had been questioned to the point of evoking impeachment against him. “I have always worked, in all circumstances, to carry out my task in strict compliance with the constitutional provisions”, the president wanted to emphasize in the message.

But besides this scruple, there is probably more. Perhaps – but it is only a suspicion – is added the desire to put some clarity in this magmatic, creative and rather confused phase, in which it is hypothesized for one thing that the head of state can act as the referee and the player at the same time. , the guarantor of the rules and at the same time directing government policy overlapping the premier. Nothing of the kind is derived from the vision that Mattarella has illustrated to the country. The president embodies national unity. He is by definition “super partes” and, as soon as he is elected, he runs to “strip himself of any previous political affiliation” to “take charge exclusively of the general interest, of the common good of each and every one”. He must defend his functions with his nails from the bullies on duty in order to return them intact to those who come after him. He carries on his shoulders the responsibility of cooperating loyally with all other institutions, especially at the present time, without stepping on any of them. And he has the by no means easy task of guaranteeing governability, avoiding “dangerous leaps in the dark”. That is, political adventures of all kinds. As it happens, this is precisely the reason why Mattarella has always been opposed to dissolving the Chambers in advance when, several times, in the seven-year period, he has been asked to send everyone home; in order to avoid the heart attack of the legislature in full pandemic, with the risk of not collecting the billions of Europe, he managed to promote a government of broad understandings (the one led by Mario Draghi) pushing the exercise of his powers to the limit.

As many have perceived, the result is a sort of “identikit” of the ideal president. A vademecum of what a head of state should do and represent, according to the Constitution. A precious instruction booklet for the benefit of the 1009 “great electors” who will meet in three weeks to elect the new tenant of the Colle. If he is also a patriot, as Giorgia Meloni hopes, we will find out by living. The important thing, Mattarella respectfully points out, is to clarify what is meant. For him, a true patriot is someone who fights on the front line for a “united and supportive” Republic; who in the most desperate moments strives to keep the country together; not those who play to break it.

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