Votes count. Even in Italy, where for a long time most scholars thought that elections were a meaningless game, votes may have a powerful impact. 1 The elections of April 5 and 6, 1992, may not seem to have been critical elections in that they do not as yet appear to have produced a realignment. Nevertheless, they were extremely important because they strongly indicated that a major process of "dealignment" is at work. If one can stretch die analytical terms, this dealignment has affected not only the parties and the party system, but also the governmental coalitions and the institutions. Its causes are to be found in a changed relationship between society and the political system. In turn, this very dealignment will be the cause for additional changes in the Italian socio-political system.