Berlusconi confuses leadership with absolute monarchy, says his deputy

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London, Dec. 2 (ANI): Silvio Berlusconi's deputy Gianfranco Fini has been overheard blasting the Italian Prime Minister who for "confusing leadership with absolute monarchy."

The Italian deputy premier's remarks, which were inadvertently recorded during his conversation with a prosecutor at a prize giving ceremony on November 6, have aggravated Berlusconi's problems after a series of revelations about his sex life rocked the government, The Guardian reports.

Unaware that the microphone in front of him was live, Fini said Berlusconi was unable to distinguish between "popular consent, which he obviously has and which gives him a mandate to govern, and a sort of immunity from any other authority [such as] the magistracy, the audit court, the [top appeals court], the head of state or parliament".

While Berlusconi's party played down the embarrassment, the leader of the main opposition party, Pierluigi Bersani, said it was "the confirmation of problems in the majority".

Antonio Di Pietro, of the smaller Italy of Principles party, predicted that the scandals that have weakened Berlusconi had brought the country to "the eve of a new revolution".

As Berlusconi's difficulties are continuing to grow, Fini has become increasingly open in his criticism of the government's policies, and has astonished followers by voicing support for a tolerant, progressive and secular form of conservatism. (ANI)

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