There were big changes in Italian politics in 2006.
Prodi became the new President making the winning party the Centrosinistra (centre left). It was a close race between him and Belusconi and was decided by the votes of Italians living abroad. It has not been a smooth start however and there has been out-cry over his financial reform largely due to the rise in taxes.
Giorgio Napolitano, 81 years old, took over from Ciampi as the Presidente della Repubblica(President of the Republic). He won with 543 votes and was elected on the 10th may 2006. Born in Napoli (Naples) on 29/5/1925, Napolitano is the 2nd oldest Presidente della Repubblica. The oldest being Partini, who was 82. He is the 1st from the Partitio Comunista Italiano (Italian Comunist Party).