Rome

Conte gets government-formation mandate (3)

To try to form M5S-League govt

Conte gets government-formation mandate (3)

Rome, May 23 - President Sergio Mattarella on Wednesday handed law professor Giuseppe Conte a mandate as premier-designate to try to form a government backed by the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement (M5S) and the anti-migrant, Euroskeptic League parties. Conte accepted with reservations, as is the usual practice. Conte, an unelected 54-year-old Puglia-born lawyer and academic picked by the two populist parties, will assemble a team of ministers he will then propose for Mattarella's approval. The M5S and League have already agreed their government team and a government 'contract' including a basic income, flat tax, pension reform, and vows to renegotiate EU spending limits, expel half a million undocumented migrants, revise the TAV high-speed rail line with France, lift compulsory school vaccinations, scrap hundreds of 'useless' laws, and strike a new partnership with Russia. Mattarella is expected to have something to say about some touted ministerial picks, especially anti-EU economist Paolo Savona as economy minister. He may also challenge some aspects of the programme if they clash with the Italian Constitution and international treaties. Conte, who would be Italy's sixth unelected premier, was chided Tuesday on some allegedly misstated parts of his CV and his past representation of the poster girl for the discredited Stamina stem-cell treatment.

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