Silvio Berlusconi: Italy’s Comeback King – RantAWeek

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Silvio Berlusconi: Italy’s Comeback King

Posted by Tyler Miksanek on July 13, 2012 at 1:00 am

Silvio Berlusconi’s political fortunes seemed over when he was forced out of his position as Italy’s Prime Minister. Now, he seems ripe for a comeback.

Back in November 2011, the world gave its farewell to Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.  Although he survived scandals relating to false testimony, bribery, corruption and having sexual relations with a minor, Berlusconi was finally forced out of office by economic problems relating to the E.U. debt crisis.  His replacement was Mario Monti, an economist who was tasked with fixing Italy’s monetary woes.  However, Mr. Monti has made it clear that his tenure as Prime Minister is temporary, and that he will not seek re-election.

Mr. Monti’s pledge to step down at the end of a single term will leave a vacancy, one that many Italians feel should be filled by none other than Silvio Berlusconi.  Scandals aside, Mr. Berlusconi remains popular among the Italian people.  And while Monti’s government has been a respite from the often controversial Berlusconi, Italy’s economic problems are far from over.

Italy, as one of the largest members of the Eurozone and also one of the most fiscally troubled, has been a focus of debate for E.U. leaders.  It’s ten year bond yield is around six percent, making it expensive for the Italian government to borrow.  Worse, its debt to GDP ratio was 120% in 2011, meaning the government owes more than the entire Italian economy produces in a year.  On top of all that, its economy appears to be contracting.

By supporting Berlusconi, voters would entrust him to combat these problems and more.  There’s no way to tell whether Berlusconi is up to that challenge, but the mere fact that he is being considered for the job he was thrown out of last year means that Silvio Berlusconi is truly Italy’s comeback king.  If only the Italian economy could make as impressive of a comeback as well…

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