ROME – Less than a week after Italy's populist parties were given the mandate to form Europe's allegedly most unpredictable government, the incoming prime minister announced on Sunday night that he had failed to form a government.
As a result of a deadlock over the future government's economy minister, Italy is bumping into uncertainty – and potential new elections less than three months after the Italians last went to the polling booth.
"I assure you that I have given my maximum effort and attention to accomplish this task," said Giuseppe Conte, a previously unknown lawyer. His election as prime minister-designate had given rise to concerns that he was a pawn of the anti-establishment Five Star Movement and the anti-immigrant league, the populist forces that established him as a compromise candidate.
Shortly after Mr. Conte's Italian President Sergio Mattarella, who has been infatuated with great powers by the Constitution of Italy during the transitional period of the government and whose job is to confirm a stable government that protects Italian interests, publicly spoke of his Quirinale Palace.
"I do not do it with a light heart because I've done everything to give life to a political government," said Mattarella, explaining that he had accepted all the demands of the parties, including their selections, from a prime minister who had never been elected to office.
But he said he could not support her selection of a minister of economics who, he said, threatened to take Italy out of office for the Eurozone. He said that even threatening to leave the euro would have dramatic consequences on the markets, costing Italian families and investors money and their young people.
It is unclear what will happen next, but Mr. Mattarella seemed to name a technical name in the coming hours or days.
The leaders of the Five-Star Movement have already discussed the charges of Mr Mattarella, while Leader Matteo Salvini is unaware that he has opted for a Eurosceptic Minister of Economic Affairs and in English: www.mjfriendship.com/en/index.php?id=16&L=1 His popularity has risen during the winding negotiations, and he desperately wanted to go to early elections
. Mattarella told Carlo Cottarelli late Sunday evening that he would come to the Quirinal Palace on Monday morning, where he was expected to form a technical government
. Cottarelli, former director of the International Monetary Fund's Treasury Department, has experience in the Bank of Italy and in Italy's most important energy group, ENI.
A favorite choice of former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, Mr. Cottarelli, speaking fluent English, recently responded to a question on Bloomberg television if he was Prime Minister by saying, "I do not think there is a possibility . "