A 67-year-old Art Historian, Professor Giulio Carlo Argan, has been elected Rome's first Communist Mayor.?
A 67-year-old Art Historian, Professor Giulio Carlo Argan, has been elected Rome's first Communist Mayor. Professor Argan was elected a councillor as an Independent on the Communist Party's ticket in June.
SYNOPSIS: He was elected to head the city's new coalition government of Communists, Socialists and Social Democrats on Monday. Professor Argan is currently Professor of Modern Art at the University of Rome.
He received the votes of Communists, Socialists and Social Democrats, but members of the church-backed Christian Democrat Party, who have ruled since World War Two, abstained. The new administration commands the support of 39 of the council's 80 members.
Rome is the latest major city in Italy to adopt a left-wing administration. Professor Argan now faces the problem of a record budget deficit reaching 5,600 million U.S. dollars this year. Rome also has a high crime rate, unemployment, transport problems and an open war over illegal property development.
In an interview after his election, Professor Argan said he thought Rome probably had more problems than any other Italian city. One of his short-term solutions is a tough town planning policy.