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Vatican daily Osservatore Romano endorses Monti

Church appeals 'to restore noble' sense of politics

27 December, 19:57
Vatican daily Osservatore Romano endorses Monti (ANSA) - Rome, December 27 - The Vatican's daily on Thursday backed caretaker premier Mario Monti's bid for a second term at the helm of a centrist Catholic coalition. L'Osservatore Romano said Monti had launched "an appeal to restore the highest and most noble sense of politics which is still, also etymologically, care of the common good". Italian media has commented that the daily paper's backing is practically a papal endorsement for Monti and a turn away from ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi whose relationship with the Vatican was damaged by an alleged affair with the Moroccan-born belly dancer 'Ruby' whom his is reported to have paid for sex when she was 17. The Vatican has said it is "troubled" by the affair, dubbed Rubygate, and the Osservatore Romano wrote last January that it "caused a dent in Italy's image that will be hard to repair".

Pope Benedict XVI in his Christmas greeting Tuesday urged Italian voters to keep high values in mind when making choices. The Vatican continues to hold significant sway in Italian politics.