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The Democrats, Italy

I Democratici

Last modified: 2021-08-24 by rob raeside
Keywords: i democratici | the democrats |
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image by M. Schmöger, 19 July 2002

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The flag of the "Democratici", belonging to "Margherita", sub-coalition of Ulivo.
M. Schmöger, 19 July 2002

I am startled to see Italy's new Democrats using the donkey that has long (since the nineteenth century) symbolized the Democratic Party in the United States.  Is the symbol well enough known in Italy to be worth imitating?
John Ayer, 20 July 2002

Inside political circles, yes. For the general public, no. But IMHO they never tried to appeal to a wide audience as a party with a specific identity, seeing themselves as a temporary step to a bigger party, either the unified party of the centre-left "Ulivo" coalition or, as it's now, the "Margherita" party.
Two things worth noting: the background and the lettering of the symbol are just the same as seen on Ulivo's symbol, and the little donkey has a certain "Disney" appeal that a lot of people in Italy found questionable.
On the other side, the Alleanza Nazionale party (at the right side of the spectrum, and currently 2nd biggest partner in the government coalition) tried once to use the elephant in an election coalition, together with Mr. Segni' s "Pact for Italy" but the poll result was discouraging and therefore the symbol was dropped. See
There is a certain trend going on in the Italian political life to pick up exterior aspects of the US politics, without really getting to the core.
Alessio F. Bragadini, 20 July 2002

You can see a photo of the flag at
Logo at
Dov Gutterman, 22 July 2002

Democratici ("Democratici per l'Ulivo" = Democrats for the Olive Tree - After the fall of the Prodi government in 1998, Romano Prodi started to build a new party as a merger movement of the centrist parts of the Ulivo coalition and groups affiliated to it. The party even attracted the former member of the Greens and mayor of Rome, Francesco Rutelli, who became candidate for prime minister for the 2001 elections, but lost against Berlusconi. Under the leadership of Arturo Parisi the Democratici are part of the "Margherita" sub-coalition. In the two parliamentary chambers the "Democratici" members are part of the "Margherita" group.

The logo of the "Democratici" shows a donkey (as an allusion to the symbol of the American Democrats) on a field of white blending into light blue, and the inscription "i Democratici". The flag is a bluish green with the logo in the center. The background colour of the flag (bluish green) as well as the style of the inscription in the logo are the same as in the symbols of "L'Ulivo", of which the "Democratici" form part of. Photos of the flag at:, mantini2.jpg, minisini2.jpg and Piazza10.JPG.
M. Schmöger, 1 August 2002