Italy To Vote In Referendum That Could Help Usher In Populists

n this photo taken on Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2016, a man walks past posters showing Italian premier Matteo Renzi and promoting the NO vote in the upcoming constitutional referendum, in Rome. Italians will be called on Dec. 4 to vote, in a referendum proposed by Premier Matteo Renzi’s government, over a reform that if approved will change the country’s Constitution adopted in1947. A yes-or-no referendum Sunday on government-championed constitutional reforms has been transformed by rivals into a virtual plebiscite on the 41-year-old leader, Italy’s youngest. A win by the “No” camp would be expected to trigger Renzi’s resignation.
A man walks past posters showing Italian premier Matteo Renzi and promoting the NO vote in the upcoming constitutional referendum, in Rome. Italians will be called on Dec. 4 to vote, in a referendum proposed by Premier Matteo Renzi's government, over a reform that if approved will change the country's Constitution adopted in1947. A yes-or-no referendum Sunday on government-championed constitutional reforms has been transformed by rivals into a virtual plebiscite on the 41-year-old leader, Italy’s youngest. A win by the “No” camp would be expected to trigger Renzi’s resignation. Gregorio Borgia / AP Photo
n this photo taken on Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2016, a man walks past posters showing Italian premier Matteo Renzi and promoting the NO vote in the upcoming constitutional referendum, in Rome. Italians will be called on Dec. 4 to vote, in a referendum proposed by Premier Matteo Renzi’s government, over a reform that if approved will change the country’s Constitution adopted in1947. A yes-or-no referendum Sunday on government-championed constitutional reforms has been transformed by rivals into a virtual plebiscite on the 41-year-old leader, Italy’s youngest. A win by the “No” camp would be expected to trigger Renzi’s resignation.
A man walks past posters showing Italian premier Matteo Renzi and promoting the NO vote in the upcoming constitutional referendum, in Rome. Italians will be called on Dec. 4 to vote, in a referendum proposed by Premier Matteo Renzi's government, over a reform that if approved will change the country's Constitution adopted in1947. A yes-or-no referendum Sunday on government-championed constitutional reforms has been transformed by rivals into a virtual plebiscite on the 41-year-old leader, Italy’s youngest. A win by the “No” camp would be expected to trigger Renzi’s resignation. Gregorio Borgia / AP Photo

Italy To Vote In Referendum That Could Help Usher In Populists

Audio available after show airs.

Italy is set to hold a constitutional referendum this weekend and while Italians are being asked to vote on changes that would include reducing the number of senators in the legislature, it’s turned into a referendum on Prime Minister Matteo Renzi.

Depending on how the vote goes, it could help push the populist, anti-establishment Five Star Movement into power there.

For more, we turn to Luigi Zingales, a professor of entrepreneurship and finance at the University of Chicago and the director of the Stigler Center at the University of Chicago.