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Monday October 14th, 2019 9:34PM

The Latest: Italian premier wins first confidence vote

By The Associated Press
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ROME (AP) — The Latest on Italian government politics (all times local):

9:30 p.m.

Premier Giuseppe Conte has won a crucial confidence vote in Parliament's lower house on his new coalition government.

The 343-263 vote confirmed a comfortable margin in the Chamber of Deputies for the four-day old government.

But Conte's margin in Tuesday's vote in the Senate is expected to be much closer.

___

6 p.m.

Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte has made pro-Europe, pro-growth promises while seeking lawmakers' support for his new left-tilting governing coalition.

Conte forged a coalition last week out of mismatched partners joined by determination to keep far-right leader Matteo Salvini and his League party out of power.

The lower Chamber of Deputies is set to vote Monday evening on the government Conte formed with the populist 5-Star Movement, the center-left Democratic Party and a tiny left-wing party.

As interior minister in Conte's previous government, Salvini stiffened Italy's tough illegal immigration policies by banning migrant rescue boats run by charities from entering Italian ports.

Conte indicated Monday that his new government plans to tweak migrant policy but gave no specifics.

The League was a partner in the previous government, which Salvini brought down by withdrawing and trying to force an early election that could make him premier.

The firebrand nationalist leader joined protesters outside Parliament on Monday and said citizens were clamoring for their say at the ballot box.

___

11:30 a.m.

Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte is pitching for support in Parliament for his new left-leaning coalition ahead of crucial confidence votes.

The lower Chamber of Deputies, where the government has a comfortable majority, is set to vote Monday evening. Conte's fortunes are dicier in the Senate, where a coalition of the populist 5-Star Movement and center-left Democrats holds a much-slimmer margin in Tuesday's vote.

Matteo Salvini's anti-migrant League and a smaller far-right party were protesting outside Parliament.

If Conte's government loses either vote, it must resign.

His first government collapsed after 14 months when Salvini withdrew his right-wing forces' support. Salvini was hoping the move would trigger new elections that would give him the premiership. But the 5-Stars and Democrats set aside bitter rivalry to form an alternative coalition.

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