Domenica, 21 Ottobre 2018

Monti, Bersani signal post-election alliance in Italy


Pordenone, February 5 - Outgoing Premier Mario
Monti responded positively on Tuesday after centre-left leader
Pier Luigi Bersani said he was open to the possibility of
working with the former European commissioner after this month's
vote in Italy.
"I appreciate all openings, including that of Bersani,"
said Monti, who is standing on a reform ticket backed by
centrist parties.
"I will be willing to ally with all of those, and only
those, who work for structural (economic) reforms".
Earlier Tuesday centre-left leader Pier Luigi Bersani said
he would be willing to work with Monti after the election
February 24 and 25.
Bersani's alliance is in front in the opinion polls with
over a third of Italians expected to vote for it, but ex-premier
Silvio Berlusconi's centre-right coalition has been gaining
ground in recent weeks.
The centre left, led by Bersani's Democratic Party (PD), is
still favoured to win the election, but it may not have a
working majority in parliament.
This has led to speculation that Bersani could make a
post-election pact with former European commissioner Monti, who
took the helm of an emergency government in November 2011 and is
standing for office on a reform platform backed by several
centrist parties.
"We are very ready to cooperate with all the forces that
are against the Northern League, against Berlusconi, against
populism," Bersani said in Berlin.
"And therefore certainly with professor Monti," he added,
stressing that the PD had wanted and supported Monti's
administration of unelected technocrats.
The hypothesis of working with Monti could be problematic
because the PD is allied with the left-wing SEL party, which was
staunchly opposed to Monti's government.
Monti, whose ticket was fourth in a poll released Tuesday,
has repeatedly said the PD's ties with SEL will make it
difficult for the centre left to govern effectively if it wins
the election.
Both SEL leader Nichi Vendola, the governor of Puglia, and
the outgoing premier have said they would not be in the same
government together.
Meanwhile Bersani's centre-left coalition stopped its slide
in the opinion polls on Tuesday when it increased its lead over
Berlusconi's centre-right alliance.
The centre left saw its lead over the centre right rise to
5.5% in the latest SWG poll, 0.5% higher than in the previous
survey on Friday.
The centre left had 33.6% of the projected vote, compared
to 32.8% on Friday.
Support for Berlusconi's alliance also increased, but by
less, gaining 0.3% to reach 28.1%.
The centre left's once mighty advantage in the polls has
been whittled down in recent weeks after Berlusconi embarked on
a media blitz.
The centre-left coalition also saw its standing in the
polls fall last week following a derivatives scandal at the
Monte dei Paschi di Siena (MPS) bank, which has historic ties to
the PD.
The anti-establishment Five Star Movement (MS5) of comedian
Beppe Grillo was steady in third place at 18% in Tuesday's poll.
Monti's centrist coalition dropped 0.9% with 13.3% of
projected votes.
Civil Revolution, a new party led by Palermo anti-Mafia
magistrate Antonio Ingroia, fell 0.1% to 4.9%, still above the
4% threshold needed in order to qualify for seats.

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