Who will lead the left?
Tomorrow, Sunday, we have the equivalent of primaries - public opportunities to endorse one particular candidate to lead the PD, a centre left party in Italian politics. It isn't really just a party, it is the major party in a coalition of many other left inclined groupings which it has cleft to its bosom, but there are also other parties of the left which, probably depending on the leader of the PD selected after the primaries, might be inclined to align themselves - whereas other established allies migh decide to part company.So, as everything in Italian politics, it's about as clear as mud!The front runners are considered to be Bersani (currently leading the PD) who could be considered a very boring but safe pair of hands, Matteo Renzi who is an absurdly good looking relatively young man, proposing some ideas perceived as outlandish by bank loving Blairites and the like (on wages) who has made a name for himself running Florence, and Nichi Vendola, who has led the region of Puglia for some time, to considerable acclaim. This latter has some very simple ideas about wages (probably more achievable and arguably more useful for the lower paid than those of Renzi). Vendola is openly gay, and speaks fluent English, attributes which commend him to the international twitterati.The remaining two candidates are Bruno Tabacci and Laura Puppato. La Puppato (from Veneto) has a fair number of green credentials, has been admired by Beppe Grillo as an admirable form of politician, and runs a company involved in insurance. She is a relative latecomer to the race. Tabacci has a financial background, very conventional, and loads of non exec posts, and he does appear to have moved political parties with breathtaking frequency. He is from Lomardy.So - it seems unlikely to me that tomorrow any one of these candidates will get a clear 51% of the votes, so we will have to wait until the run off between the two most preferred on December 2nd.