Italian Prime Minister resigns over handling of COVID-19

The rubble in the Italian parliament has continued with the resignation of PM Conte. The prime minister tendered his resignation letter yesterday with many house leaders scrambling for the vacant position. 

Italy’s PM resigns after failing to get a majority vote

PM Giuseppe Conte has tendered his resignation, and it is not yet known how quickly he will be able to form a fresh coalition. Parties in Italy are not on the same page over the handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, where over 86,000 Italians lost their lives to the virus.

Conte had a meeting with President Sergio Mattarela, who is likely to ask him to form a more formidable coalition government. Just last week, Mr. Conte failed to keep his senate majority. There are two options in this scenario though: another person could become a new Italian PM, or these could go to a snap election.

Mr. Conte, a professor of law, has led coalition governments since 2017, resigned yesterday. Presently, the ex-PM is talking with the senate leader, Elisabeth Casellati about the political problem this resignation might cause. It is also expected that in the next three days, there will be further talks with party chieftains, however, the final decision rests on the president.

What led to the PM resignations?

Ex-PM Renzi’s pulled his party from the coalition and promised to only return to the coalition if Giuseppe Conte sees to his party demands. Recently, Mr. Conte escaped a vote of confidence vote at the house. This was followed by a narrow senate win about two days after. His inability to get a majority vote at the senate hampered government policies of joy economic issues and this necessitates the political situation.

Mr. Renzi’s issue was objecting to Mr. Conte’s plans for spending $250 billion of the European Union recovery capital which is part of a $650 billion rescue fund for the COVID-19 pandemic. Mr. Renzi said these funds could be invested in key industries like digital and emerging technologies. He also prefers MPs to technocrats to monitor these allocations. Finally, he wants some aspect of the funds to invest heavily in the health sector.

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