Italy’s prime minister Mario Monti resigned on Friday, December 21, and on the following Sunday, indicated he would be willing to lead a group of reform-minded political forces in Italy’s upcoming elections if they backed his ideas.
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Monti has led Italy in establishing austerity measures designed to reduce the country’s precarious debt situation.
He stressed that not only did Italy need to avoid regressing toward dangerous policies, the country needs to move forward by simplifying Italy’s labor laws.
It can no longer tolerating corruption and conflicts of interest, and improving the position of women.
But even if Monti runs again in the upcoming election, his support among voters who have been stung by the strict austerity measures of the past year may not be solid.
A combination of the Democratic Party, Italy’s leading political force, with centrist politicians could carry more weight than the 35% the Democratic party thinks it could win on its own.
Monti says Italy also needs to overhaul its justice system. He says the country should remain on the broad path to reforms such as the overhaul of the pension system and the institution of a controversial property tax that he successfully implemented over the last year.
Italy’s former premier, Silvio Berlusconi, has threatened to enter the race and abolish the property tax and other reforms instituted by Monti.
The Italian election will be one to watch since Italy is Europe’s third largest economy and its debt situation is still precarious