Italy'srival populist leaders sought more time Monday to hash out a deal to govern together, with one side citing significant differences over how to stop the flood of migrants coming in and the other insisting his supporters have their say online before finalizing any coalition deal.
The left-wing 5-Star Movement and right-wing League have been trying to form a coalition since March, but talks foundered over the role of former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's Forza Italia party.
Some of the more explosive ideas are absent from the revised contract, notably the suggested opt-out from the single currency.
The leaked documents, as well as Salvini's own public statements, make clear that the emerging Italian government is on course for a major standoff with Brussels if the incoming government pushes hard for a to renegotiation of Italy's contribution to the European Union budget as well as the fiscal compact.
"First must come the things that need doing, and only afterwards (we need worry about) absurd rules written many years ago when the world was totally different", he said.
What do the two parties want?
This year's "State of the Union" conference opened in Florence on Friday (11 May), coinciding with the news that Italy is likely to get a coalition government of two Eurosceptic forces, both keen on leaving the eurozone.
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The head of state has made it clear that he will only look at the definitive version of the text, after a draft leaked earlier this week caused consternation with proposals that would allow Italy to leave the euro, demand financial concessions from the European Union and withdraw sanctions on Russian Federation.
"This is our message to the new government". "In other words, the eurozone's member countries are democracies and one sees increasing hostility to the euro, which is, unfortunately, spilling over to a broader hostility to the broader European project and liberal values".
But that relaxed attitude could change if a populist government in Rome were to start a serious attempt to implement its vision for a return to the pre-Maastricht days.
While the coalition has ruled out an exit for now, Five Star has a track record of changing its political stripes at nearly any moment if it seems that doing so will boost its popularity. If this fails they want to go back to the polls immediately.
Five Star's unique status as a party without a traditional left or right wing position allows it to be far more flexible, something it is keen to emphasise. Third is the unusually long average maturity of Italian government bonds.
While speculation abounds as to who leaked the document, Italy's borrowing costs jumped and stocks slid once the leak was made public. Speaking at the event, European Parliament President Antonio Tajani strongly warned Italy against exiting the euro. Investors were particularly spooked by a section where the nascent coalition floated plans to ask for €250 billion in debt forgiveness for the country.
5-Star and the League said in a statement that the draft, which was dated 14 May, was "an old version that has been considerably modified".