Italian PM tenders resignation amid flagging support for energy stimulus bill

Source: www.foxnews.com : 2022-07-14 19:14:16 : Timothy Nerozzi

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Italy’s brittle coalition government has shattered after Prime Minister Mario Draghi tendered his resignation Thursday. The Associated Press reported his offer came following a refusal by one of coalition members not to support a bill that would help consumers and industries struggling with soaring energy prices.

Draghi, who has been in power since February 2021, made the announcement after narrowly surviving a confidence vote earlier this week.

The Five Star Movement — a populist party that enjoyed widespread success before souring its support from voters with policy shifts — refused to take part in the vote. Draghi has said repeatedly that he would resign if he lost the support of Five Star.

“I will tender my resignation to the president of the republic this evening,” Draghi told his cabinet. “The national unity coalition that backed this government no longer exists.”

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ROME, ITALY - JULY 12: Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi during the press conference at the Multifunctional Hall of the Prime Minister on July 12, 2022 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Massimo Di Vita/Archivio Massimo Di Vita/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images)

ROME, ITALY – JULY 12: Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi during the press conference at the Multifunctional Hall of the Prime Minister on July 12, 2022 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Massimo Di Vita/Archivio Massimo Di Vita/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images)

Five Star’s refusal to take part in the vote raised eyebrows, with some members of the party claiming it was not a reflection on the government, but instead a matter of internal politics and disagreement.

“We are not taking part in the vote on this measure today … but this position of ours is not about confidence in the government,” senate Five Star leader Mariolina Castellone said before the vote.

Despite maintaining his majority without Five Star, Draghi has taken the lack of endorsement as a death knell to his cabinet.

GARMISCH-PARTENKIRCHEN, GERMANY - JUNE 26: Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi listens to other G7 leaders speaking at the „Global Infrastructure" side event during the G7 summit at Schloss Elmau on June 26, 2022 near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. Leaders of the G7 group of nations are officially coming together under the motto: "progress towards an equitable world" and will discuss global issues including war, climate change, hunger, poverty and health. Overshadowing this year’s summit is the ongoing Russian war in Ukraine. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

GARMISCH-PARTENKIRCHEN, GERMANY – JUNE 26: Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi listens to other G7 leaders speaking at the „Global Infrastructure” side event during the G7 summit at Schloss Elmau on June 26, 2022 near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. Leaders of the G7 group of nations are officially coming together under the motto: “progress towards an equitable world” and will discuss global issues including war, climate change, hunger, poverty and health. Overshadowing this year’s summit is the ongoing Russian war in Ukraine. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

Draghi told his cabinet that he will be submitting his formal resignation to President Sergio Mattarella on Thursday.

It will be up to the president to accept or decline the prime minister’s exit from office.

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GARMISCH-PARTENKIRCHEN, GERMANY - JUNE 28: Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi speaks to the media on the third and final day of the G7 summit at Schloss Elmau on June 28, 2022 near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. Leaders of the G7 group of nations have officially coming together under the motto: "progress towards an equitable world" and will discuss global issues including war, climate change, hunger, poverty and health. Overshadowing this year’s summit is the ongoing Russian war in Ukraine. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

GARMISCH-PARTENKIRCHEN, GERMANY – JUNE 28: Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi speaks to the media on the third and final day of the G7 summit at Schloss Elmau on June 28, 2022 near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. Leaders of the G7 group of nations have officially coming together under the motto: “progress towards an equitable world” and will discuss global issues including war, climate change, hunger, poverty and health. Overshadowing this year’s summit is the ongoing Russian war in Ukraine. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

Italy is only the latest country experiencing radical challenges to present order politics.

Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa fled the country early on Wednesday, just days after thousands of protesters stormed his residence over the nation’s crippling economic crisis.

Rajapaksa and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe had both agreed to resign, with the president’s resignation effective on Wednesday. Wickremesinghe said he will step down once a new government is in place, but demonstrators are demanding he resign immediately.

In Japan, former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was assassinated last week after being shot from behind by a deranged gunman who was upset over Abe’s time in office. 

THE Associated Press contributed to this report.

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