Segre chairs the first session of the Senate: “I feel dizzy, here 100 years after the march on Rome”

The senator for life opened the assembly at Palazzo Madama greeted by a long applause. All MPs stand up for the life senator who gave the speech at the opening of the session for the vote of the President of the Senate

After being greeted by a standing ovation from the whole hemicycle, Liliana Segre opened the first session at Palazzo Madama of the XIX Legislature as an elderly senator (HERE THE FULL SPEECH). In her speech, he first wanted to greet the President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella, Pope Francis and the former head of state Giorgio Napolitano. “I wish to address to the president emeritus, whom he was unable to preside” – she said referring to the latter – “, my best wishes in the hope of being able to see him soon re-established in the Senate”. Throughout her speech, her words were accompanied by about twenty applause. The senator for life wears an elegant black velvet jacket with a large jeweled brooch to decorate it (TOWARDS THE NEW GOVERNMENT, LIVE UPDATES)

“The chilling atmosphere of war hangs over us”

The senator for life then spoke of the war in Ukraine: “The chilling atmosphere of the war that has returned to our Europe, close to us, with all its load of death, destruction, cruelty, terror, has loomed over us in recent weeks. madness without end. I join the precise words of the President of the Republic Sergio Mattarella: ‘Peace is urgent and necessary. The way to rebuild it passes through a reestablishment of truth, of international law, of the freedom of the Ukrainian people’ “.

“It’s my turn to be the presidency of the Senate on the anniversary of the Rome march”

Another standing ovation in the Senate chamber when Liliana Segre mentioned the march on Rome and then the memory of her child who from school went to the highest bench in the Senate. Longer applause from the center-left benches. Ignazio La Russa, who is listening and taking notes from the front row of the center-right desks, also stood up. “Today I am particularly excited in front of the role that fate has in store for me today,” said the senator. “In this month of October” – he explained – “in which the centenary of the March on Rome falls, which started the fascist dictatorship, it is up to someone like me to temporarily assume the presidency of this temple of democracy which is the Senate of the Republic “.” And the symbolic value “- he added -” of this casual circumstance is amplified in my mind because, you see, in my day school began in October; and it is impossible for me not to feel a sort of vertigo when remembering that the same a little girl who on a day like this in 1938, disconsolate and lost, was forced by racist laws to leave her elementary school desk empty, today she finds herself by a strange fate even on the most prestigious bench in the Senate! “.

“The majority has the right and duty to govern”

“The majority that came out of the polls” – the senator stressed – “has the right and duty to govern; minorities have the equally fundamental task of opposing. Common to all must be the imperative to preserve the institutions of the Republic, which are of all, which are not owned by anyone, who must operate in the interest of the country, who must guarantee all parties “. Segre then underlined: “The Senate of the nineteenth legislature is a deeply renewed institution, not only in the political balance and in the people of the elected, not only because for the first time young people aged 18 to 25 were able to vote for this Chamber too. , but above all because for the first time the elected representatives are reduced to 200. Belonging to such a rarefied forum can only increase in all of us the awareness that the country is watching us, that our responsibilities are great but at the same time great opportunity to lead by example. Leading by example does not only mean doing our simple duty, that is, fulfilling our office with ‘discipline and honor’, working hard to serve institutions and not to use them “.

“Let’s leave the shouted politics out of the assembly”

“We could also allow ourselves the pleasure of leaving the shouted politics out of this assembly” – continued the senator for life – “which has contributed so much to growing disaffection from the vote, interpreting instead a ‘high’ and noble policy, which without anything remove the firmness of the various convictions, show respect for the opponents, open oneself sincerely to listening, express oneself with kindness, even meekness “. Segre added: “The elections of 25 September saw, as it should be, a lively competition between the different camps that presented the country with alternative programs and often conflicting visions. And the people decided. It is the essence of democracy. “.

“Why would April 25 and June 2 be divisive dates?”

“The great nations, then, prove to be such also by recognizing themselves chorally in the civil holidays, finding themselves in brotherhood around the anniversaries carved in the great book of homeland history. Why shouldn’t it be the same for the Italian people?”, Said Segre amid applause. of the classroom. “Why should they be lived as ‘divisive’ dates instead of with an authentic republican spirit, April 25 Liberation Day, May 1 Labor Day, June 2 Republic Day?” Asked the senator for life.

“The Constitution is not a piece of paper, Italians feel it is their friend”

In his speech, Segre then highlighted the Constitution: “In Italy the main anchor around which the unity of our people must manifest itself is the Republican Constitution, which as Piero Calamandrei said is not a piece of paper, but is the testament of 100,000 dead fallen in the long struggle for freedom; a fight that does not begin in September 1943 but which ideally sees Giacomo Matteotti as the leader. The Italian people have always shown great attachment to its Constitution, they have always felt it a friend “. Then, on any changes to the Charter, Segre specified: “Of course, the Constitution is also perfectible and can be amended (as it itself provides in article 138), but allow me to observe that if the energy that has been spent for decades to change the If the Constitution – however, with modest and sometimes pejorative results – had been used to implement it, our country would be a more just and even happier country “.

“Keep the prestige of the Senate high”

“I hope” – Segre later said – “that the new legislature will see a concerted commitment by all the members of this assembly to keep the prestige of the Senate high, substantially protect its prerogatives, reaffirm in facts and not in words the centrality of Parliament “. The senator for life then wanted to add: “For a long time a drift has been complained of, a mortification of the role of the legislative power due to the abuse of the emergency decree and the use of the vote of confidence. And the serious emergencies. that have characterized the last few years could only aggravate the trend “.

“Stop public debate barbarism”

“Another terrain on which it is desirable to overcome the fences and assume a common responsibility” – he explained, greeted by a loud applause and with the senators standing – “is that of the fight against the spread of the language of hatred, against the barbarization of the public debate, against the violence of prejudices and discrimination “. Segre then added: “Allow me to recall a virtuous precedent: in the past legislature the work of the ‘Extraordinary Commission for the fight against the phenomena of intolerance, racism, anti-Semitism and incitement to hatred and violence’ concluded with the approval of the ‘unanimity of a guiding document. A sign of an awareness and will that cross the political spectrum, which is essential to persist “.

“Segre, healthy and loyal institutional collaboration is needed”

“In my naivety as a mother of a family” – he continued – “but also according to my firm conviction, I believe that it is necessary to stop the long series of errors of the past and for this it would be enough for the majority to remember the abuses that they denounced by governments when it was a minority, and that minorities remember the excesses they attributed to the opposition when they governed “. Segre explained: “A healthy and loyal institutional collaboration, without detracting from the physiological distinction of roles, would allow most of the legislative production to be brought back to its natural bed, while at the same time guaranteeing certain times for voting”.

“Urgent commitment to help families and businesses”

The senator then focused on the economic and energy crisis: “I hope that the whole Parliament, with unity of purpose, will be able to implement in collaboration with the Government an extraordinary and very urgent commitment to respond to the cry of pain that comes from so many families and from many companies struggling under the blows of inflation and the exceptional surge in energy costs, who see a dark future, who fear that inequalities and injustices will further expand rather than reduce “.

“We will always have the EU on our side”

Segre recalled how “we will always have the European Union by our side with its values ​​and the concrete solidarity it has shown itself capable of in recent years of serious health and social crisis”, and then conclude, with a general standing ovation, saying that “there is not a moment to lose: a clear signal must come from democratic institutions that no one will be left alone, before fear and anger can reach the alert levels and overflow. Senators and senators, dear colleagues, good work ! “.