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Napolitano consults with parties on new govt

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Florence mayor Matteo Renzi greets couples that have been married for over 50 years during a ceremony on Valentine’s Day in Florence, Italy, Friday, Feb. 14, 2014. Outgoing Premier Enrico Letta hosted his final cabinet meeting Friday after his party sacked him in a stunning power play to put Florence’s dynamic young mayor at the helm of the Italian government. His rival and the architect of his downfall spent the day doing what he does best, charming ordinary Italians by celebrating Valentine’s Day at Florence’s city hall with hundreds of married couples. (AP Photo/Fabrizio Giovannozzi)

Florence mayor Matteo Renzi greets couples that have been married for over 50 years during a ceremony on Valentine’s Day in Florence, Italy, Friday, Feb. 14, 2014. Outgoing Premier Enrico Letta hosted his final cabinet meeting Friday after his party sacked him in a stunning power play to put Florence’s dynamic young mayor at the helm of the Italian government. His rival and the architect of his downfall spent the day doing what he does best, charming ordinary Italians by celebrating Valentine’s Day at Florence’s city hall with hundreds of married couples. (AP Photo/Fabrizio Giovannozzi)

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ROME (AP) — Italy’s president is consulting with political party leaders to determine if Democratic Party leader Matteo Renzi has enough support to form a new government.

Giorgio Napolitano was in the second day of consultations Saturday, which will include meeting Silvio Berlusconi who remains the influential head of the Forza Italia party despite losing his Senate seat due to a tax fraud conviction.

The anti-establishment 5 Star Movement and the xenophobic Northern League are boycotting the talks to protest the irregular transition of power that bypassed a vote of confidence in Parliament.

Renzi, 39, accelerated his path to the premier’s post this week by engineering Enrico Letta’s resignation within the party.

Napolitano could tap Renzi as soon as this weekend. Any new Renzi government would need to pass confidence votes in Parliament.

Associated Press

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