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‘Like a scorpion,’ Renzi starts a time bomb on Italy’s governing alliance

10 2 0
21.02.2020

Analysis. Sensing his fall from power, ex-Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has dictated conditions to avoid a no-confidence vote. He doesn’t actually want to destroy the government. He just wants it weak so he can return to power.

written by Andrea Colombo

Topic Italy

ROME

February 21, 2020

It’s not a crisis yet, but on Wednesday night Matteo Renzi stretched the fabric of the government alliance close to the breaking point. He was happy to set the timer on the bomb that could bring down the government: “If the statute of limitations law is not changed by Easter, we will present a motion of no-confidence against [Alfonso] Bonafede,” the Justice Minister.

He followed that up with a proposal for constitutional reform that would shut down the legislature and blow up the proportional representation law, with the direct election of the prime minister, who would become something like “the mayor of Italy”: “It’s the only way out of this muck”. And with what government would that work? “Two options: the Nazareno model with Giuseppe Conte as prime minister or an institutional government.”

Then he opened up a new front, that of the economy, bringing out the big guns: “The recession is coming and jobs will crater. We have to unblock public works, and if Conte wants a shock plan, he will start by eliminating the citizenship income.” And he........

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