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Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte plans to resign Tuesday morning, his office said in a statement Monday, heightening political turmoil in the country as it continues to struggle against COVID-19.
"The Council of Ministers is convened for tomorrow morning at 9 AM, during which the Prime Minister, Giuseppe Conte, will communicate to the ministers his will to go to the (Presidential Palace) and hand in his resignation," the statement read. It added that he would then see President Sergio Mattarella.
A calculated move, the resignation may ultimately afford him another chance at forming a coalition government.
Surviving two confidence votes in Parliament last week, Conte lost his governing majority in the Senate after his predecessor Matteo Renzi withdrew the small Italia Viva party from Conte's ruling coalition over differences regarding the government's management of the COVID-19 crisis and the resulting economic recession.
Likely to invite him to build a new governing majority, President Mattarella can choose whether to accept Conte's resignation. That said, if Conte receives the presidential mandate to form a new majority, he would need to add five more senators to his existing coalition.
Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte will resign tomorrow, heightening political turmoil in the country as it battles Covid-19https://t.co/ecZfEpbDae
His coalition, formed in 2019, is led by the center-left Democratic Party (PD) and the anti-establishment Five Star Movement (M5S), which, despite significant political differences, has prevented snap elections that would have favored the far-right League Party.
After Italy imposed Europe's first lockdown last spring, Conte enjoyed high approval ratings in response to a spiraling number of COVID-19 cases and deaths. According to Reuters, despite not enjoying any political affiliation or party behind him, he is Italy's most popular politician with an approval rating above 50%.