TORONTO - As a campaign launch it had much to commend it. Wednesday’s candidate inaugural of Fratelli D’Italia’s running mates, Vincenzo Arcobelli and Mario Cortellucci, was well attended, - 1500 by mayor Maurizio Bevilacqua’s estimate.
The event took place at Mr. Cortellucci’s Event Centre. Invitations were open to the public (subject to pre-registration) and, no doubt, long-time friends, business and political contacts of the Cortel Group must have internalized the call for a command performance.
That too is a part of a political process, at least here in Canada. A political rally is a show of strength no matter what country’s political standards are used as a marker. On that score, Fratelli D’Italia, part of the “right wing partnership” vying for control of the Italian Parliament, should feel pretty comfortable, judging by display put on by the Arcobelli-Cortellucci launch.
The evening also accomplished the stated purpose of presenting the “platform” and the personalities/potential representatives driving the agenda: Cortellucci, the entrepreneur, new man on the block unencumbered by “old-style quid-pro-quo” politics; and Arcobelli, a practised speaker steeped in the philosophy and ideology of Italy’s parties of the Right-Wing.
The Corriere’s resident expert on the Italian political landscape will elaborate in future articles.
The evening also attracted “la crème” of the Conservative movement in the GTA. Sam Ciccollini, noted stalwart of the Elliot-Flaherty clan, presented the candidate running-mates, dutifully detailing their respective accomplishments.
Ironically, another “politico”, Doug Ford, also a family friend of that same clan but now an “anti- Elites” PC Leadership candidate in his own right, was invited “surreptitiously” by an unannounced local PC candidate lurking in the back of the Hall.
Press and Media diverted to Ford almost immediately upon discovering his presence. A “hiccup” in the event organization whose negative impact was minimized by the fact that “the main event” – launching Arcobelli-Cortellucci – had already run its course.
Several municipal Councillors, Mario Ferri, Marylin Iafrate (Liberals), also took the opportunity “to be seen” in such an event – as they should. As did in fact, Tony Porretta, co-ordinator of a “competing but allied group, Forza Italia, under the same political umbrella group.
He will present his team next week on St Valentine’s Day. Group Lorenzini’s candidate, Rosanna Di Pierdomenico also tested the waters. Today 15 candidates will debate their positions at the Columbus Centre starting at 6:30 pm.