Football baseball basketball soccer hockey Italy’s Democrats: Let’s try for alternative to Salvini

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The Associated Press

Democratic Party leader Nicola Zingaretti arrives at Quirinale palace for a meeting with Italian President Sergio Mattarella, in Rome, Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019. President Sergio Mattarella continued receiving political leaders Thursday, to explore if a solid majority with staying power exists in Parliament for a new government that could win the required confidence vote. (Claudio Peri/ANSA via AP)

Italy’s Democrats, Parliament’s largest opposition force, say it’s worth trying to form a new government to shut out the right, led by euroskeptic nationalist Matteo Salvini.

Salvini yanked his League party’s support from Premier Giuseppe Conte’s populist Government, triggering its collapse earlier this week and leaving President Sergio Mattarella with the crucial task of deciding whether to declare the end of the legislature, forcing elections 3½ years early.

Democratic Party chief Nicola Zingaretti stressed after meeting Thursday with Mattarella that any such new coalition must have Parliament’s durable, broad backing and cannot come “at any cost.” Otherwise, says Zingaretti, national elections must be held.

Any new coalition critically would need support from the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement, whose leaders meet with Mattarella later in the day.

Salvini is demanding new elections.

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