The left wing of Mr Prodi's broad alliance made big advances in the vote and can block legislation in either chamber of parliament. There was speculation that its influence was already showing up in Mr Prodi's foreign policy after he was quoted by news agencies as having told the Arab satellite channel, Al-Jazeera: "I shall commit myself at the European level to shape a new position with respect to the new Palestinian government. I am looking with great attention at the signs of an opening being made by Hamas."Berlusconi has never quite managed dignity but his hanging on to a few more days of power sees him at his undignified worst. But worse still is the fact that whilst the French, Spanish and German governments have congratulated Prodi on his victory,
A spokesman for the right accused Mr Prodi of complicity in "the worst sort of anti-westernism". The remarks had been translated into Italian from the Arabic voiceover and what Mr Prodi actually said was: "Now I'll get to work in an active way in Europe and we shall see the position in future. Beside, there have been openings by Hamas that are very interesting."
Britain's prime minister, Tony Blair, and the US president, George Bush, were waiting for the prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, to concede defeat.So the British and American governments are reluctant to let go of their favourite holocaust denier.