The youngest MEP of the Italian delegation is from the Five Star Movement (M5S). Among the 73 people who will represent the country in the next European Parliament Mario Furore, 31, is the youngest. Born in 1988, an activist for the Movement since December 2012, Furore is among the six candidates elected in the constituency of Southern Italy.
In Italy the Five Star Movement didn’t perform well and lost ground to the Democratic Party (PD). But it did beat PD with the youngest MEPs. Such a peculiar role belonged and still belongs to Brando Benifei (born in 1986), a PD man who was re-elected. Anyway, when the 1 July the new European Parliament will officially start functioning, Benifei will be replaced by Furore as the youngest Italian serving as MEP.
Furore’s performance wasn’t so easy to be predicted. Italian electoral system is based on the rule of the preferences. It means that voters can choose who to vote, by ticking the name of the candidate. In case of no specific indication, the vote goes to the list. Seats are assigned to the various lists, in proportion to the votes obtained at national level, and they are reassigned to the constituencies in proportion to the votes obtained in each of them. Once the number of seats on the list in each constituency has been determined, the candidates with the greatest number of preference votes are proclaimed.
In other words, Furore’s victory couldn’t be taken for granted. Nevertheless, the Foggia-native politician proved capable of getting the confidence of his fellow southern Italians. Almost 32,000 people (31,926) voted for him.
Furore didn’t provide his official personal political curriculum, yet. He will, as every MEP must make it available on the website of the European Parliament together with the declaration of financial interest. Of course those who voted for him know his story is locally-rooted.
First of all, in 2014 and 2015 the young M5S man was member of the working group on Direct democracy, savings and legality, all core items in the political agenda of the Movement. In the same period he contributed to draft the political program for the regional elections.
The last four years, from 2015 on, he worked as personal assistant of Rosa Barone. The latter is member of the Parliament of Puglia Region. She is in charge of Economic development and president of the Regional committee on Organized crime.
Among other activities, during his service for the local authorities Furore worked on the legislative procedure of the rural development plan (PSR), a key scheme for every region. PSRs are the ‘conditio sine qua non’ to unlock financing under the European Structural funds. Such an activity contributed to develop Furore’s personal interest in European Affairs. “Precisely because of the work done so far, I decided to engage”, he told the Five Star Movement when he submitted his candidacy for the European elections.
Europe at our regions service
“Europe is closer to our territories than we think”, the youngest MEP stated. The European Union, the Five Star politician recalled, it is about “indirect funds, structural and investment funds, all financed by the European Commission but managed by national local authorities, and whose objective is to implement the regional policy or cohesion policy by reducing the economic, social and territorial disparities between the various European regions”.
Furore’s main goal for the next five years seems to be to making a better use of the EU instruments to further develop the Italian regions, “especially the south”, the part of the country he knows better. “I would like to make my political action more concrete, together with the Government and the Southern Regions, in order to improve our territories and offer a different quality of life for all citizens”.
The youngest MEP of the Italian delegation to the European Parliament likes the motto “Nobody must be left behind”, of the Five Star Movement. “I made it mine”, he admitted. Now he has the possibility of contributing to translate the motto into reality. Let’s see.