Keywords: Form of Government; Government; President of the Republic; Prime Minister; European Union; Political Parties.
The procedures through which Governments have been formed during the XVIII parliamentary term (2018-2023) are characterized by several novelties, and even anomalies, in comparison to previous practice. Among these novelties the essay identifies: shorter consultation cycles; the use of exploratory mandates limited to the verification of a specific parliamentary majority (rather than open-ended as in the past); the Contratto per il Governo del Cambiamento – a sort of legislative manifesto adopted by one of the Governments in the parliamentary term; unusual features in the phase of the attribution of the mandate to form a government; and finally, the refusal by the President of the Republic to nominate a Minister proposed by the charged prime minister. The essay analyzes each of these features individually, by interrogating both its compatibility with previous practice and with the Constitution. It then offers a common reading of these developments: the essay argues that the said developments reveal a longer term evolution of the Italian Form of Government linked to the crisis (understood as transformation) of political parties and the process of European Integration.