Thursday, April 13, 2006

Berlusconi claims hamper new Prodi government

Silvio Berlusconi alleged massive election fraud after the apparent victory of Romano Prodi's Left coalition.

Berlusconi has been searching for about 25,000 votes from disputed ballots to reverse the poll in his favor. The fraud charges are likely to delay any new government from taking office for at least a month. The billionaire's Right coalition has mostly supported his claims.

In the end the election could be decided by expatriates whose votes still are not counted. President Carlo Azeglio Ciampi has refused to name a victor in the race saying that he would leave that up to his successor. Some believe he may change his mind in the event of a Supreme Court ruling.

The victory, if it remains so, marks the latest evidence of a resurgence of the Left in European politics. The Left's victory in Spanish elections, and the recent retreat of the French government on controversial employment "reform" are other examples.

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