208 Days and Counting

Italy's relentless investigations into corruption are now focusing on Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, himself elected in reaction to the shadiness of his predecessors. If scandal brings down his government any time soon, Berlusconi's will take its place among a long series of famously short-lived postwar governments in Italy, where the citizenry certainly take to heart Thomas Jefferson's dictum "that government governs best which governs least."

PRIME MINISTER

--Guilio Andreotti

(Christian Democrat)

LENGTH OF TERM

9 days (February 1972)

REASON FOR GOVERNMENT'S COLLAPSE

The government loses a vote of confidence

PRIME MINISTER

--Andreotti, again

LENGTH OF TERM

10 days (March 1979)

REASON...

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