European admirers of Donald Trump were left speechless Tuesday night by his tweet praising Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte — who is poised to form a government of the left that is sure to include a noted "Trump Basher."
"Starting to look good for the highly respected Prime Minister of the Italian Republic, Giuseppe Conte," the president said in a tweet. "Represented Italy powerfully at the G-7. Loves his Country greatly & works well with the USA. A very talented man who will hopefully remain Prime Minister!"
Trump's pro-Conte salvo came a week after the prime minister's government resigned. Pushing hard to bring down the government and force new elections was Interior Minister Matteo Salvini. Known as the "Donald Trump of Italy" for his hard-line stand on illegal immigration, Salvini and his League Party are considered strong favorites to win a majority in parliament in any future election.
But Italian President Sergio Mattarella, no friend of Salvini's, is soon expected to give Conte a formal mandate to form a new government. In contrast to his previous government composed of the League and the anti-establishment Five Star Movement, Conte's next government will include 5-Star and the left-of-center Democratic Party (Partito Democratico).
Sure to be in the next government is the Democratic Party's most famous leader, former Prime Minister Matteo Renzi.
"I'm a really lucky man because I worked with Barack Obama and not Donald Trump," Renzi recently told CNBC. With Trump, he said, 'I believe President Trump has to understand the [U.S.] relationship with the EU is not in his hands. It's a historical relationship . . . it's impossible to cancel with a tweet."
As to what led Trump to wish Conte to remain prime minister with a left-of-center government that includes Renzi, the White House has yet to explain.
John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.
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