Italian Elections 1948


On April 18th, 1948, elections were held in Italy to elect the first parliament. The choice was parties that supported the West and parties seen as proxies for the Soviet Union. The Center-right Christian Democracy Party achieved an overwhelming victory gaining 48.5 % of the vote, which gave them an absolute majority in Italian legislative houses..

The general elections in Italy in 1948 were vital to Italy’s future. The Christian Democracy Party received support from the United States and Great Britain. Alcide De Gasperi led it. The significant opposition was the Popular Democratic Front, which comprised the Italian Communist Party, and Palimiro Togliatti led the Socialist Party. It received financial support from the Soviet Union. The election took place in the shadow of the Soviet take over of Czechoslovakia, and thus the election was especially bitterly fought.

The Christian Democrat warned that if the communist took power, disaster would strike Italy. They pointed out what had happened in Czechoslovakia. They also pointed out that the Soviet Union had opposed Italian membership in the United Nations and also opposed the return to Triest to Italy. The Popular Front’s campaign concentrated on the cost of living and other economic issues.

The Christian Democrats won an overwhelming victory receiving 48.5 percent of the vote. While the Popular Front won only 31% of the vote. The Christian Democrats victory translated into 305 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and 131 in the Senate, giving them a clear majority.