Letta emerged as the main candidate in the last 24 hours. The fact that Napolitano has chosen Letta is significant for at least two reasons:
- Letta is undoubtedly a politician, as opposed to the previous favourite Giuliano Amato, who would have been seen as a technocratic Prime Minister. This means Napolitano has opted for a political solution to the post-election stalemate;
- Letta is 47, and Amato is 75. So the choice made by 88-year-old Napolitano addresses the Italian electorate's call for a rejuvenation of the political system. This is significant in the 'old vs young' struggle that has characterised Italian politics recently.
However, make no mistake: this move doesn't wipe out the deep divisions among the main political parties, and whatever shape the government takes, it won't be easy for Italy to continue with the reforms that the eurozone demands.