With The Recent Election, Italy Becomes The Most Expat-Friendly Country
Allow me to give a big pat on the back to Italy, which, with its recently-introduced election rules for expatriates, is becoming the most expat-friendly country on the planet.
Italy's next election will include the 3.5 million Italians living abroad. However, this is nothing new. Lots of countries, including the United States, allow their expatriates to vote. However, Italy is going much further and creating 18 seats in congress specifically for expatriates. So, instead of lumping the expatriates in with their previous home districts, expats will be divided into new geographical regions such as "Europe" or "South America" and will be electing representatives who will serve their region.
WOW! This is a fantastic idea! Big kudos go out to Italy for finally devising a system to include expatriate Italians in the political process. We just had a post on how some U.S. expatriates are feeling disconnected from their home country and don't follow what's going on there. I think that would change significantly if there were U.S. congressional districts & 2 senators that represented the interests of U.S. citizens living abroad.
The fact is, it makes no sense whatsoever to lump expats in with their previous districts. The local decisions being made there do not effect us at all. However, having our own representatives that serve the expatriate community would be a great way for expats to feel represented by our government. We'd have someone on our side when we get poor service by our embassy abroad, when the congress tries to change the tax rules for expats, or when our government is going on international adventures in the countries that we live in. Right now we have no real representation because we're split across 400+ districts. But if you could put us all together, we'd have someone who could look out for us. For the sake of all expats, everywhere, let's hope Italy's idea catches on.
Labels: Current Events