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Italian PM candidate Giuseppe Conte

05/22/2018
Graphic News

May 22, 2018 -- Giuseppe Conte, a law professor with scant political experience, has been picked as the candidate for prime minister by Italy’s anti-establishment 5-Star Movement and the far-right League.

Italy’s head of state, President Sergio Mattarella, must approve the appointment of Conte as prime minister. Conte’s rise to Palazzo Chigi -- the seat of government in central Rome -- is not yet a certainty; President Mattarella is to hold a fresh round of talks with the heads of the upper and lower houses of parliament on Tuesday.

Five Star leader Luigi Di Maio and League leader Matteo Salvini both ruled themselves out of the top job, but both are expected to be senior ministers in the cabinet.

Salvini is expected to become the interior minister -- to oversee strict curbs on immigration -- after the arrival of more than 600,000 boat migrants on Italian shores over four years fueled the anti-immigrant League’s popularity.

Di Maio will likely become minister for economic development, to introduce a universal income for the poor, a signature Five Star policy. The economy ministry could go to Salvini’s top adviser, Giancarlo Giorgetti, or Paolo Savona, an 81-year-old economist and former industry minister.


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