Berlusconi II Cabinet

The Berlusconi II Cabinet was the 57th cabinet of the Italian Republic and the first cabinet of the XIV Legislature. It took office following the 2001 elections, and held office from 11 June 2001 until 23 April 2005, a total of 1,412 days, or 3 years, 10 months and 12 days. It held office for the longest period in the history of the Republic, and for the second longest period in the history of unified Italy since 1861 (outlasted only by the Mussolini government). During its long tenure, its composition changed significantly. Following the poor performance of the centrist parties in the Italian regional elections of 2005, most of the ministers of the Union of Christian and Centre Democrats and the New PSI resigned from the government, which was succeeded by the Berlusconi III Cabinet.

Berlusconi II Cabinet
Flag of Italy.svg
57th Cabinet of Italy
Silvio Berlusconi 1996.jpg
Date formed11 June 2001 (2001-06-11)
Date dissolved23 April 2005 (2005-04-23) (1,413 days)
People and organisations
Head of stateCarlo Azeglio Ciampi
Head of governmentSilvio Berlusconi
No. of ministers25 (incl. Prime Minister)
Total no. of members30 (incl. Prime Minister)
Member partiesFI, AN, LN CCD, CDU
Status in legislatureCentre-right coalition
Opposition partiesDS, DL, PRC, UDEUR, SDI, FdV, PdCI
History
Election(s)2001 election
Legislature term(s)XIV Legislature (2001 – 2006)
Incoming formationBerlusconi II Cabinet formation, 2001
Outgoing formationBerlusconi III Cabinet formation, 2005
PredecessorAmato II Cabinet
SuccessorBerlusconi III Cabinet

FormationEdit

In 2001 Berlusconi again ran as leader of the centre-right coalition House of Freedoms (Italian: La Casa delle Libertà), which included the Union of Christian and Centre Democrats, the Northern League, the National Alliance and other minor parties. Berlusconi's success in the May 2001 general election led to him becoming Prime Minister once more, with the coalition receiving 45.4% of the vote for the Chamber of Deputies and 42.5% for the Senate.

On the television interviews programme Porta a Porta, during the last days of the electoral campaign, Berlusconi created a powerful impression on the public by undertaking to sign a so-called Contratto con gli Italiani (English: Contract with the Italians), an idea copied outright by his advisor Luigi Crespi from the Newt Gingrich's Contract with America introduced six weeks before the 1994 US Congressional election,[1] which was widely considered to be a creative masterstroke in his 2001 campaign bid for prime ministership. In this solemn agreement, Berlusconi claimed his commitment on improving several aspects of the Italian economy and life. Firstly, he undertook to simplify the complex tax system by introducing just two tax rates (33% for those earning over 100,000 euros, and 23% for anyone earning less than that figure: anyone earning less than 11,000 euros a year would not be taxed); secondly, he promised to halve the unemployment rate; thirdly, he undertook to finance and develop a massive new public works programme. Fourthly, he promised to raise the minimum monthly pension rate to 516 euros; and fifthly, he would suppress the crime wave by introducing police officers to patrol all local zones and areas in Italy's major cities.[2] Berlusconi undertook to refrain from putting himself up for re-election in 2006 if he failed to honour at least four of these five promises.

The government obtained the confidence of the senate on 20 June 2001 with 175 votes in favour, 133 against and 5 abstentions,[3][4] and the confidence of the Chamber of Deputies on 21 June 2001 with 351 votes in favour, 261 against and 1 abstention.[5]

The opposition parties claim Berlusconi was not able to achieve the goals he promised in his Contratto con gli Italiani. Some of his partners in government, especially the National Alliance and the Union of Christian and Centre Democrats have admitted the Government fell short of the promises made in the agreement, attributing the failure to an unforeseeable downturn in global economic conditions. Berlusconi himself has consistently asserted that he achieved all the goals of the agreement, and said his Government provided un miracolo continuo (a continuous miracle) that made all 'earlier governments pale' (by comparison). He attributed the widespread failure to recognize these achievements to a campaign of mystification and vilification in the printed media, asserting that 85% of newspapers were opposed to him.[6] Luca Ricolfi, an independent analyst, held that Berlusconi had managed to maintain only one promise out of five, the one concerning minimum pension levels. The other four promises were not, in Luca Ricolfi’s view, honoured. In particular, the undertakings on the tax simplification and the reduction of crime.[7]

FallEdit

The House of Freedoms did not do as well in the 2003 local elections as it did in the 2001 national elections. In common with many other European governing groups, in the 2004 elections of the European Parliament, gaining 43.37% support. Forza Italia's support was also reduced from 29.5% to 21.0% (in the 1999 European elections Forza Italia had 25.2%). As an outcome of these results the other coalition parties, whose electoral results were more satisfactory, asked Berlusconi and Forza Italia for greater influence in the government's political line.

In the 2005 regional elections (3 April/4 April 2005), the centre-left gubernatorial candidates won in 12 out of 14 regions where control of local governments and governorships was at stake. Berlusconi's coalition kept only two of the regional bodies (Lombardy and Veneto) up for re-election. Three parties, Union of Christian and Centre Democrats, National Alliance and New PSI, threatened to withdraw from the Berlusconi government. The Italian Premier, after some hesitation, then presented to the President of the Republic a request for the dissolution of his government on 20 April 2005.

Party breakdownEdit

Beginning of termEdit

MinistersEdit

12
4
3
3
1
1

Ministers and other membersEdit

End of termEdit

MinistersEdit

11
5
3
3
2

Ministers and other membersEdit

Composition of the GovernmentEdit

Portrait Office Name Term Party Deputy Ministers
Undersecretaries
 
Prime Minister
Silvio Berlusconi
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Forza Italia
Undersecretaries:
Gianni Letta (Ind.)
Paolo Bonaiuti (FI)
 
Deputy Prime Minister[a]
Gianfranco Fini
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
National Alliance
 
Deputy Prime Minister
Marco Follini
3 December 2004 – 18 April 2005
Union of Christian and Centre Democrats
 
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Renato Ruggiero
11 June 2001 – 6 January 2002
Independent
Undersecretaries:
Roberto Antonione (FI)
Margherita Boniver (FI)
Alfredo Mantica (AN)
Mario Baccini (UDC)[b]
(until 2 Dec. 2004)
Giampaolo Bettamio (FI)
(since 30 Dec. 2004)
 
Silvio Berlusconi
(ad interim)
6 January 2002 – 14 November 2002
Forza Italia
 
Franco Frattini
14 November 2002 – 18 November 2004
Forza Italia
 
Gianfranco Fini
18 November 2004 – 23 April 2005
National Alliance
 
Minister of the Interior
Claudio Scajola
11 June 2001 – 3 July 2002
Forza Italia
Undersecretaries:
Maurizio Balocchi (LN)
Antonio D'Alì (FI)
Alfredo Mantovano (AN)
Carlo Taormina (FI)
(until 5 Dec. 2001)
Michele Saponara (FI)
(since 30 Dec. 2004)
 
Giuseppe Pisanu
3 July 2002 – 23 April 2005
Forza Italia
 
Minister of Justice
Roberto Castelli
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Northern League
Undersecretaries:
Jole Santelli (FI)
Giuseppe Valentino (AN)
Michele Vietti (UDC)[b]
Luigi Vitali (FI)
(since 30 Dec. 2004)
 
Minister of Economy and Finance[8]
Giulio Tremonti
11 June 2001 – 3 July 2004
Forza Italia
Deputy Ministers:
Mario Baldassarri (AN)
(since 19 Oct. 2001)
Gianfranco Micciché (FI)
(since 19 Oct. 2001)
Undersecretaries:
Maria Teresa Armosino (FI)
Manlio Contento (AN)
Daniele Molgora (LN)
Giuseppe Vegas (FI)
Mario Baldassarri (AN)
(until 19 Oct. 2001)
Gianfranco Micciché (FI)
(until 19 Oct. 2001)
Vito Tanzi (Ind.)
(until 17 July 2003)
Gianluigi Magri (UDC)
(since 4 Feb. 2003)
 
Silvio Berlusconi
(ad interim)
3 July 2004 – 16 July 2004
Forza Italia
 
Domenico Siniscalco
16 July 2004 – 23 April 2005
Independent
 
Minister of Productive Activities
Antonio Marzano
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Forza Italia
Deputy Ministers:
Adolfo Urso (AN)
(since 19 Oct. 2001)
Undersecretaries:
Giovanni Dell'Elce (FI)
Giuseppe Galati (UDC)[b]
Mario Valducci (FI)
Adolfo Urso (AN)
(until 19 Oct. 2001)
Stefano Stefani (LN)
(until 17 July 2003)
Roberto Cota (LN)
(since 30 Dec. 2004)
 
Minister of Education, University and Research
Letizia Moratti
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Forza Italia
Deputy Ministers:
Guido Possa (FI)
(since 19 Oct. 2001)
Stefano Caldoro (NPSI)
(since 14 Jan. 2005)
Undersecretaries:
Valentina Aprea (FI)
Maria Grazia Siliquini (AN)
Guido Possa (FI)
(until 19 Oct. 2001)
Stefano Caldoro (NPSI)
(since 14 Jan. 2005)
 
Minister of Labour and Social Security
Roberto Maroni
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Northern League
Undersecretaries:
Alberto Brambilla (LN)
Maurizio Sacconi (FI)
Grazia Sestini (FI)
Pasquale Viespoli (AN)
Roberto Rosso (FI)
(since 30 Dec. 2004)
 
Minister of Defense
Antonio Martino
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Forza Italia
Undersecretaries:
Filippo Berselli (AN)
Francesco Bosi (UDC)[b]
Salvatore Cicu (FI)
Giuseppe Drago (UDC)
(since 30 Dec. 2004)
 
Minister of Agriculture, Food and Forestry Policies
Gianni Alemanno
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
National Alliance
Undersecretaries:
Teresio Delfino (UDC)[c]
Gianpaolo Dozzo (LN)
Paolo Scarpa (FI)
 
Minister of the Environment
Altero Matteoli
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
National Alliance
Deputy Ministers:
Francesco Nucara (PRI)
(since 30 Dec. 2004)
Undersecretaries:
Roberto Tortoli (FI)
Francesco Nucara (PRI)
(until 30 Dec. 2004)
Antonio Martusciello (FI)
(until 30 Dec. 2004)
Stefano Stefani (LN)
(since 30 Dec. 2004)
 
Minister of Infrastructure and Transport
Pietro Lunardi
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Independent
Deputy Ministers:
Ugo Martinat (AN)
(since 19 Oct. 2001)
Mario Tassone (UDC)[c]
(since 19 Oct. 2001)
Undersecretaries:
Paolo Mammola (FI)
Nino Sospiri (AN)
Guido Viceconte (FI)
Giancarlo Giorgetti (LN)
(until 21 June 2001)
Ugo Martinat (AN)
(until 19 Oct. 2001)
Mario Tassone (UDC)
(until 19 Oct. 2001)
Paolo Uggè (FI)
(since 7 March 2003)
Silvano Moffa (AN)
(since 30 Dec. 2004)
Giovanni Ricevuto (NPSI)
(since 30 Dec. 2004)
 
Minister of Health
Girolamo Sirchia
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Independent
Undersecretaries:
Cesare Cursi (AN)
Antonio Guidi (FI)
Elisabetta Casellati (FI)
(since 30 Dec. 2004)
Rocco Salini (FI)
(since 11 March 2005)
 
Minister of Cultural Heritage and Activities
Giuliano Urbani
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Forza Italia
Deputy Ministers:
Antonio Martusciello (FI)
(since 14 January 2005)
Undersecretaries:
Nicola Bono (AN)
Mario Pescante (FI)
Vittorio Sgarbi (FI)
(until 25 June 2002)
 
Minister of Communications
Maurizio Gasparri
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
National Alliance
Undersecretaries:
Massimo Baldini (FI)
Giancarlo Innocenzi (FI)
 
Minister of Regional Affairs
(without portfolio)
Enrico La Loggia
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Forza Italia
Undersecretaries:
Alberto Gagliardi (FI)
 
Minister for the Implementation of the Government Program
(without portfolio)
Giuseppe Pisanu
11 June 2001 – 3 July 2002
Forza Italia
 
Claudio Scajola
28 August 2003 – 23 April 2005
Forza Italia
 
Minister of Public Function
(without portfolio)
Franco Frattini[d]
11 June 2001 – 14 November 2002
Forza Italia
Undersecretaries:
Learco Saporito (AN)
 
Luigi Mazzella
14 November 2002 – 3 December 2004
Independent
 
Mario Baccini
3 December 2004 – 23 April 2005
Union of Christian and Centre Democrats
 
Minister for Innovation and Technologies
(without portfolio)
Lucio Stanca
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Forza Italia
 
Minister of Italians in the World
(without portfolio)
Mirko Tremaglia
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
National Alliance
 
Minister for Equal Opportunities
(without portfolio)
Stefania Prestigiacomo
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Forza Italia
 
Minister of Community Affairs
(without portfolio)
Rocco Buttiglione
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Union of Christian and Centre Democrats
before 6 December 2002:
United Christian Democrats
 
Minister for Institutional Reforms and Devolution
(without portfolio)
Umberto Bossi
11 June 2001 – 16 July 2004
Northern League
Undersecretaries:
Aldo Brancher (FI)
Gian Paolo Gobbo (LN)
(since 30 Dec. 2004)
 
Roberto Calderoli
16 July 2004 – 23 April 2005
Northern League
 
Minister for Parliamentary Relations
(without portfolio)
Carlo Giovanardi
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Union of Christian and Centre Democrats
before 6 December 2002:
Christian Democratic Centre
Undersecretaries:
Cosimo Ventucci (FI)
 
Secretary of the Council of Ministers
Gianni Letta
11 June 2001 – 23 April 2005
Independent
  1. ^ With delegation to policies of opposition and recovery to the spread of drug addiction.
  2. ^ a b c d Before 6 December 2002: CCD
  3. ^ a b Before 6 December 2002: CDU
  4. ^ With delegation to the coordination of the information and security services.

Further readingEdit

  • Donovan, Mark (2004). The Governance of the Centre-Right Coalition. Italy Between Europeanization and Domestic Politics. Italian Politics. 19. Berghahn. pp. 80–98.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Gingrich, Newt; Armey, Dick (1994). Contract With America: The Bold Plan.
  2. ^ Ricolfi, Luca (2005). Dossier Italia: a che punto è il 'contratto con gli italiani. Il mulino.
  3. ^ Senato della Repubblica - XIV Legislatura - Seduta n. 6
  4. ^ "Berlusconi wins senate confidence". BBC. 20 June 2001. Retrieved 1 September 2013.
  5. ^ Camera dei Deputati - XIV Legislatura - Seduta n. 6
  6. ^ "Berlusconi: 'Successi straordinari Contro di me l'85% dei giornali'". Repubblica. 24 May 2004. Retrieved 17 November 2011.
  7. ^ Ricolfi, Luca (2006). Tempo scaduto. Il "Contratto con gli italiani" alla prova dei fatti. Il Mulino. ISBN 8815108882.
  8. ^ "Ministri dal 1945 ad oggi" [Ministers from 1945 to present]. Ministero dell'Economia e delle Finanze. Archived from the original on 13 November 2011. Retrieved 23 April 2012.