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Berlusconi remains a force in Italy turmoil
Berlusconi 's popularity keeps him relevant in new Italy turmoil, despite fall from grace
By COLLEEN BARRY
Associated Press
2014-02-15 03:01 AM

MILAN (AP) -- He has been convicted of tax fraud, booted out of the Senate and banned from political office.

In any other country, that would be three strikes.

But in Italy, Silvio Berlusconi has not lost his political legitimacy, and it will be on full display when the former premier leads his Forza Italia party to meet with Italy's president to discuss prospects for a new government after Premier Enrico Letta's resignation Friday.

Berlusconi's reemergence on Italy's political scene comes just days after a court in Naples put him on trial yet again, this time for allegedly paying a senator 3 million euros ($4 million) to switch parties to bring down a rival government.

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