Legislature I of Italy

The Legislature I of Italy (Italian: I Legislatura della Repubblica Italiana) was the 1st legislature of the Italian Republic, and lasted from 8 May 1948 until 24 June 1953.[1][2] Its composition was the one resulting from the general election of 18 April 1948.

Legislature I of Italy

I legislatura della Repubblica Italiana
1st legislature
Type
Type
HousesChamber of Deputies
Senate of the Republic
History
Founded8 May 1948 (1948-05-08)
Disbanded24 June 1953 (1953-06-24)
(5 years, 47 days)
Preceded byConstituent Assembly
Succeeded byII Legislature
Leadership
List
Giovanni Gronchi, DC
since 8 May 1948
Structure
Seats574 (C)
343 (S)
Italian Chamber of Deputies, 1948.svg
Chamber of Deputies political groups
  •   DC (305)
  •   FDP (183)
  •   US (33)
  •   BN (19)
  •   PNM (14)
  •   PRI (9)
  •   MSI (6)
  •   SVP (3)
  •   PdCI (1)
  •   PSd'Az (1)
Italy Senate of Republic 1948.svg
Senate political groups
Elections
Proportional
Proportional
Last general election
18 April 1948
Meeting place
Palazzo Montecitorio, Rome (C)
Palazzo Madama, Rome (S)
Website
First Legislature – Chamber of Deputies
First Legislature – Senate
Constitution
Constitution of Italy

Main chronologyEdit

In the 1948 general election Christian Democracy (DC) went on to win a decisive victory with the support of the Catholic Church and obtained 48.5% of the vote, defeating the leftist social-communist alliance of the Popular Democratic Front (FDP). Despite his party's absolute majority in the Italian Parliament, Prime Minister Alcide De Gasperi continued to govern at the head of the centrist coalition, which was successively abandoned by the Italian Liberal Party (PLI) in 1950 and by the Socialist Party of Italian Workers (PSLI) in 1951.

Under De Gasperi, the first republican Parliament carried out major land reforms to help the poorer rural regions in the early postwar years, with farms appropriated from the large landowners and parcelled out to the peasants. In addition, the Parliament passed a number of laws safeguarding employees from exploitation, established a national health service, and initiated low-cost housing in Italy’s major cities.[3] Here's a list of the main laws approved by the Parliament:

  • Law 28 February 1949, n. 43 – "Measures to increase workers' employment, facilitating the construction of houses for workers". The law, also known as Fanfani house program, was promoted by the Minister of Labour Amintore Fanfani and launched a seven-year plan for popular housing to increase the stock of economic housing by means of construction or purchase of economic accommodation. The law also established a special housing fund, the so-called "INA-Casa", within the National Institute for Insurance.
  • Law 10 August 1950, n. 646 – "Establishment of the Fund for extraordinary works of public interest in Southern Italy". The law established the Cassa per il Mezzogiorno (Fund for the South) to encourage the development of public works and infrastructure (roads, bridges, hydroelectric and irrigation) projects, and to provide credit subsidies and tax advantages to promote investments in the poor and mainly agricultural regions of Southern Italy.
  • Law 21 October 1950, n. 841 – "Rules for expropriation, reclamation, transformation and assignment of land to peasants", also known as the "Agrarian Reform". The law promoted the redistribution of lands to peasants in the poorer rural regions and the formation of agricultural cooperatives.
  • Law 24 February 1951, n. 84 – "Rules for the election of municipal councils". The reform changed the electoral law used for the election of the municipal councils, introducing a block voting system and abolishing the proportional representation.
  • Law 31 March 1953, n. 87 – "Amendments to the law for the election of the Chamber of Deputies", also known as Scam Law.

The end of the legislature was characterized by some controversial changes in the electoral law proposed by the government. Even if the general structure remained uncorrupted, the government introduced a superbonus of two thirds of seats in the Chamber of Deputies for the coalition which would obtain at-large the absolute majority of votes. The change was hugely opposed by the opposition parties as well as the smaller DC coalition partners, which had no realistic chances of success. The new law was called Scam Law by its detractors,[4] including some dissidents of minor government parties who founded special opposition groups to deny the artificial landslide to the DC.

Presidential electionEdit

On 10 May 1948 the newly elected Parliament met to elect the first President of Italy. On 11 May 1948 liberal economist Luigi Einaudi was elected on the fourth ballot with 518 votes out of 900.

GovernmentEdit

Portrait Prime Minister Party Term of office Government Composition
Took office Left office
  Alcide De Gasperi
(1881–1954)
DC
23 May 1948 27 January 1950 De Gasperi V DCPSLIPLIPRI
(Centrism)
27 January 1950 26 July 1951 De Gasperi VI DCPSLIPRI
(Centrism)
26 July 1951 16 July 1953 De Gasperi VII DCPRI
(Centrism)
Confidence votes

De Gasperi V CabinetEdit

16 June–2 July 1948
Investiture votes for De Gasperi V Cabinet
House of Parliament Vote Parties Votes
Chamber of Deputies
(Voting: 513 of 574,
Majority: 257)
 Y Yes DC, PSLI, PLI, PRI
346 / 513
 N No FDP, MSI, PNM
167 / 513
Senate of the Republic
(Voting: 255 of 343,
Majority: 128)
 Y Yes DC, PSLI, PLI, PRI
184 / 255
 N No PCI, PSI, MSI, PNM
67 / 255
Abstention Others
4 / 255

De Gasperi VI CabinetEdit

14 February–1 March 1950
Investiture votes for De Gasperi VI Cabinet
House of Parliament Vote Parties Votes
Chamber of Deputies
(Voting: 503 of 574,
Majority: 252)
 Y Yes DC, PSLI, PRI
314 / 503
 N No PCI, PSI, PLI, MSI, PNM
189 / 503
Senate of the Republic
(Voting: 296 of 343,
Majority: 149)
 Y Yes DC, PSLI, PRI
176 / 296
 N No PCI, PSI, PLI, MSI, PNM
110 / 296
Abstention Others
10 / 296

De Gasperi VII CabinetEdit

8–9 August 1951
Investiture votes for De Gasperi VII Cabinet
House of Parliament Vote Parties Votes
Senate of the Republic
(Voting: 260 of 343,
Majority: 131)
 Y Yes DC, PRI
151 / 260
 N No PCI, PSI, PSLI, PLI, MSI, PNM
101 / 260
Abstention Others
8 / 260
Chamber of Deputies
(Voting: 466 of 574,
Majority: 234)
 Y Yes DC, PRI
291 / 466
 N No PCI, PSI, PSLI, PLI, MSI, PNM
175 / 503

Parliamentary compositionEdit

Chamber of DeputiesEdit

 
Giovanni Gronchi, President of the Chamber of Deputies
Parliamentary groups in the Chamber of Deputies
Initial composition[5]
(8 May 1948)
Final composition[5]
(24 June 1953)
Parliamentary group Seats Parliamentary group Seats Change
Christian Democracy 305 Christian Democracy 300   5
Popular Democratic Front 183 Italian Communist Party 126   4
Italian Socialist Party 53
Socialist Unity 33 Socialist Unity 33  
National Bloc 19 Italian Liberal Party 13   6
Monarchist National Party 14 Monarchist National Party 19   5
Italian Republican Party 9 Italian Republican Party 8   1
Italian Social Movement 6 Italian Social Movement 6  
Mixed 5 Mixed 16   11
Südtiroler Volkspartei 3 Südtiroler Volkspartei 3  
Peasants' Party of Italy 1 Peasants' Party of Italy 1  
Sardinian Action Party 1 Sardinian Action Party 1  
Independents – Non inscrits 11   11
Total seats 574 Total seats 574  

Senate of the RepublicEdit

Presidents of the Senate: Ivanoe Bonomi (1948–1951), Enrico De Nicola (1951–1952), Giuseppe Paratore (1951–1952), Meuccio Ruini (1952–1953)
Parliamentary groups in the Senate of the Republic
Initial composition[6]
(8 May 1948)
Final composition[6]
(24 June 1953)
Parliamentary group Seats Parliamentary group Seats Change
Christian Democracy 148 Christian Democracy 146   2
Italian Communist Party 77 Italian Communist Party 73   4
Italian Socialist Party 41 Italian Socialist Party 38   3
Socialist Unity 23 Socialist Unity 21   2
Italian Republican Party 11 Italian Republican Party 7   4
National Bloc 10 Italian Liberal Party 9   1
Italian Social Movement 3 Italian Social Movement 3  
Mixed 30 Mixed 20   10
Südtiroler Volkspartei 2 Südtiroler Volkspartei 2  
Sardinian Action Party 1 Sardinian Action Party 1  
Independents – Non inscrits 27 Independents – Non inscrits 17   10
Total seats 343 Total seats 317[a]   26
  1. ^ Senators elected in 1948 were actually 237. The new Senate was initially composed by newly-elected senators and former members of the Constituent Assembly, of which 32 died during the term and weren't replaced. 8 new lifetime senators were appointed during the term by President Luigi Einaudi.

Senators for LifeEdit

Senator Motivation Appointed by From Till
Enrico De Nicola Former President of Italy ex officio 12 May 1948 Next legislature
Guido Castelnuovo Merits in the scientific field President Luigi Einaudi 5 December 1949 27 April 1952 (deceased)
Arturo Toscanini Merits in the artistic field President Luigi Einaudi 5 December 1949 7 December 1949 (resigned)
Pietro Canonica Merits in the artistic field President Luigi Einaudi 1 December 1950 Next legislature
Gaetano De Sanctis Merits in the social and literary field President Luigi Einaudi 1 December 1950 Next legislature
Pasquale Jannaccone Merits in the social field President Luigi Einaudi 1 December 1950 Next legislature
Carlo Alberto Salustri, known as "Trilussa" Merits in the literary field President Luigi Einaudi 1 December 1950 21 December 1950 (deceased)
Luigi Sturzo Merits in the social field President Luigi Einaudi 17 September 1952 Next legislature
Umberto Zanotti Bianco Merits in the artistic and social field President Luigi Einaudi 17 September 1952 Next legislature

GalleryEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Camera dei Deputati – 1ª Legislatura". www.storia.camera.it (in Italian). Retrieved 17 January 2021.
  2. ^ "Senato della Repubblica – 1ª Legislatura". www.senato.it (in Italian). Retrieved 17 January 2021.
  3. ^ Library of Nations: Italy, Time-Life Books, 1985
  4. ^ Also its parliamentarian exam had a disruptive effect: "Among the iron pots of political forces that faced in the Cold War, Senate cracked as earthenware pot": Buonomo, Giampiero (2014). "Come il Senato si scoprì vaso di coccio". L'Ago e Il Filo.
  5. ^ a b "I Legislatura della Repubblica italiana / Legislature / Camera dei deputati – Portale storico". storia.camera.it (in Italian). Retrieved 17 January 2021.
  6. ^ a b "senato.it – Composizione dei gruppi parlamentari nella I Legislatura". www.senato.it (in Italian). Retrieved 17 January 2021.