Trump Backs Italy as Salvini Tells EU: ‘We Are Not Changing a Comma of Our Budget’

Salvini Trump

Italy’s Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini has insisted his government will not change its new budget, despite the European Union moving to veto it for breaching bloc rules.

The nationalist League (Lega) leader’s party is technically junior to Luigi Di Maio’s anti-establishment Five Star Movement (M5S) in Italy’s new populist coalition government, but has tended to dominate its agenda through the force of his own personality and high-profile role as Minister of the Interior.

Salvini has picked a number of fights with the EU bureaucracy and the bloc’s dominant globalist faction, led by France’s Emmanuel Macron, since entering office, particularly over border control and immigration — but a clash over the national budget may be the fiercest yet.

“Being as we are polite, we open the little letters from Brussels, we read them, we respond to them,” he commented cheekily.

“They write back and we respond, but we are not changing a comma of the budget,” he added.

“If Brussels or some big professors want Italy at zero growth, they have run into the wrong government and the wrong minister.”

Italy suffers from a stagnant economy and high youth unemployment — despite the EU membership which British europhiles claim is such a boon in the context of Brexit — and the new government is seeking to increase public spending, not least to improve infrastructure in the wake of the Genoa bridge disaster which left dozens dead.

However, the EU is attempting to veto the budget using the powers it acquired over Eurozone members in the wake of the financial crisis, and enforce strict, effectively German-mandated rules on deficit spending.

Many commentators and politicians across Europe, regardless of their view on the budget’s particular merits, have expressed their discomfort over the bloc’s move, seeing it as anti-democratic.

The Italian government has received tacit support from U.S. President Donald Trump, who sees the Italian administration as being like-minded on globalism and illegal immigration.

The U.S. leader took to Twitter to compliment Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte — a non-politician proposed for the role by Salvini and Di Maio as something of an honest broker — after a conversation with him on “many subjects”.

“The Prime Minister is working very hard on the economy of Italy — he will be successful!” he said.

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