European politics are impotent, moribund and in need of life support
In response, Monti immediately announced his resignation. European leaders threw up their arms in horror.
The markets got nervous and interest rates on Italian government bonds shot up. Important elements of
Berlusconi's party rebelled and threatened a split; if Monti stands as a candidate for a centrist coalition, they will join him, they say. Meanwhile, the Partito Democratico (PD), the
leftwing opposition, is gloating. With opinion polls giving them a good lead, the election seems in the bag.
What does Berlusconi do? He says that if Monti stands for election, he will withdraw his own
candidacy and support him. Bizarre? He then says that, if he is elected himself, his first action
the threat of a split in the PDL fades. If Monti enters the fray, the rebels will be able to
support him from within the PDL. If he doesn't, then they have no leader to leave the party for.
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