Silvio Berlusconi, the vainglorious, womanizing former prime minister of Italy, is reportedly considering a comeback into the maelstrom of his country’s politics.
"We are all asking him to run, and I believe in the end, he will decide to lead the party," the secretary general of Berlusconi’s People of Liberty party, Angelino Alfano, told Sky TG24 television in Rome.
"We have no one better than Berlusconi," another of Berlusconi's most ardent supporters, MP Daniela Santanche, told the Daily Telegraph newspaper. "For months, I've been saying that he is our best candidate."
The next general election is scheduled to be held by next April. Should Berlusconi lead his party in that poll, he would return to the prime ministry for a fourth time. Given that the current prime minister, Mario Monti, has stated he will not run again after his term expires, a leadership vacuum in Italy may indeed be filled by Berlusconi.
But Berlusconi is 75 years old, and he carries a mountain of baggage, including allegations that he had sex with under-aged prostitutes, among other legal woes. Moreover, his party has lost much support since he resigned last November, currently polling only between 10 and 15 percent of the electorate, according to the latest surveys.
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