2006-2008: Down for the count?
Berlusconi narrowly lost another election to Romano Prodi and a subsequent legal challenge of the results. But analysts were too schooled in Berlusconi's history to write his political obituary. "Is the Berlusconi era over?" the New York Times asked. Given that Berlusconi would want to protect his business empire, avoid legal trouble, prepare for a comeback, and feed his ego, the paper concluded, the answer is "almost certainly not."
Indeed, the article proved prescient. The Teflon Don launched a new center-right coalition in 2007 and returned to power for a third time in 2008 after a no-confidence vote forced Prodi's government to resign (the legislature soon passed a bill granting Berlusconi immunity from prosecution while he remained in office).
The picture above shows the front pages of Italian newspapers a day after the April 2006 elections.
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