Following the resignation of a number of ministers, Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi “plans to resign to form a new government, bowing to an ally’s demands for change after losing 11 out of 13 regional elections two weeks ago,” according to a Bloomberg report.

One of the ministers who resigned on April 15, Rocco Buttiglione, is a member of the Acton Institute’s Board of Advisors. Mr. Buttiglione received the Faith & Freedom Award from the institute after withdrawing his nomination to the European Commission, in the face of withering criticism for his religious views from rival politicians, secularists and the media.

“There will be a second Berlusconi government that adheres to the policies indicated by our party,” Rocco Buttiglione, who is also the president of the Union of Christian Democrats.

Bloomberg further reports that the shake-up is due to conflicts over varous policies, including taxes. “The Union of Christian Democrats, the third-biggest party in the four-way coalition, and the National Alliance, the second- biggest, oppose Berlusconi’s plan to cut income taxes and boost spending on public works to help growth. Instead they are demanding business-tax reductions and aid to Italy’s depressed south.”

Update: In a surprising move, PM Berlusconi has decided not to resign, and instead his government will face a no-confidence vote later this week.

  • Steve Daskal

    ** If the Berlusconi gov’t loses the “vote of confidence,” which is far from unlikely, the US will be losing another key ally in EUrope. The leftist opposition in Italy is, like most of western Europe, anti-US, anti-liberty (in the sense of free markets & limited republican gov’t), and anti-Christian. I pray that Berlusconi’s gamble pays off, and that men like Senor Buttiglione are given new portfolios.

    –SteveD