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Monti to Resign PDF Print E-mail
Dec 09, 2012 at 12:42 PM

Monti has decided

Well, Silvio Berlusconi has gotten his wish and one can only hope that it will totally backfire on him. Indeed, some observes here  believe it already has. After meeting Saturday afternoon with Italian president Giorgio Napolitano, prime minister Mario Monti has announced that just as soon as the economic austerity package currently before parliament is approved, probably before Christmas, he will resign. "The situation has become untenable", Monti said yesterday after he left the Quirinale Palace. His pre-emptive move made the attempt by Berlusconi's party, the PdL, to fire a warning shot over the Monti government's bow appear ridiclous.

Monti's resignation, however,  will clear the way for the dissolution of Parliament and the setting of a date for nationwide elections, either  in early February or early March. Opponents of Berlusconi accused him, loudly, of acting irresponsibly by forcing out of office (see the following article) a government that has been doing its best to pull Italy out of the economic and financial quagmire it found itself in last year or at least to ameliorate it.

The new development is sure to send a very negative message to Europe about the country's commitment to ongoing if bitter reform. Italians would do well to look across the Ionian sea to Greece where inefficiency, ineffectiveness and downright lying by that country's leaders have reduced the nation to the direct economic situation it has known since after World War II. But while blindness is not catching, the political variety is a real danger.just two days earlier. 

However, Europe should be aware that for the time being there is no immediate danger. Monti is likely to stay at the helm of a caretaker government while elections are held and while a new government is being formed. And since in the midst of all this, the new Italian parliament will have to elect a successor to President Giorgio Napolitano, whose seven-year term ends this spring, Monti is likely to be arund for another four months. And maybe longer. One newly emerging coalition sees him as their future prime ministerial candidate, while others feel he might be a good successor for Napolitanoìs job. But it really is too soon to tell.

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