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Italian Populist Salvini Pursues Alliance With Trump Administration

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The leader of Italy’s Northern League party, Matteo Salvini, said he intends to beat out other parties in establishing direct relations with the Trump administration.

Salvini, who traveled to the United States to show his support for Trump during the campaign cycle last April, told Breitbart News Thursday that his party shares many of the perspectives of the new administration and is a logical ally for the future.

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“On many issues we see eye-to-eye with President Trump and we look forward to partnering with his administration,” Salvini told Breitbart.

This privileged partnership will be built upon common interests including “labor, immigration, national security, and the proper role of supranational organizations, such as NATO, the European Union, and the U.N.,” Salvini said.

“These issues will determine the future,” he said.

At a conference on Globalism and Sovereignty held Wednesday in the Italian Parliament, Salvini said he was already taking steps to establish a direct rapport with the White House.

“We are working to get out ahead of other interlocutors with the new Trump administration,” Salvini told the Italian daily Il Giornale.

With “no shortcuts,” Salvini said he is establishing “direct, serious, non-mediated contact” with the new Trump administration, insisting that for the League, creating “a direct channel with the new American president is crucial.”

Salvini was attending a conference on globalization and sovereignty organized by the Machiavelli Center for Political and Strategic Studies, a young think-tank that explores political, social and economic issues.

The principal speakers included an economist, a philosopher and the former president of the Vatican Bank, Ettore Gotti Tedeschi.

“Conferences like this show that we are awaiting answers from the center-right,” Salvini said, adding that he has made his own platform clear on matters such as “the euro, monetary sovereignty, globalism, identity, defense of national labor and ‘made in Italy.’”

“On these issues we have very clear ideas. We are waiting for others to clarify theirs,” he said.

The Northern League—often now referred to merely as “the League” (la Lega)—has moved from being a fringe party advocating northern secession under its founder Umberto Bossi to a populist, Eurosceptic movement aspiring to become a truly national party.

Salvini said he is doubtful regarding a possible alliance with the Five Star Movement (M5S), another populist political party whose influence has grown within Italy in recent years.

“Unfortunately, at present their ideas on these issues are quite confused and distant,” he said. “On immigration they are very confused, on the defense of the family they are on the other side of the fence, on the question of the euro they are talking about a referendum that is impossible.”

“We are waiting for them to clarify their ideas,” he said.

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