Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Berlusconi survives confidence vote

Last month we predicted the end of Silvio Berlusconi.

Consumed by scandals, a stagnant economy, as well as increasing defections within his own right-wing coalition, it really looked like the tycoon's days in office were numbered.

Wrong. Minutes ago the Italian PM survived a vote of confidence in both chambers. Literally, by the scruff of the neck, thanks to a few opposition MPs who stood their party up (literally going AWOL, imagine that in Westminster) and an unxpected extra handful of votes in favour.

Like my good old dad said, "You can never write Berlusconi off. He's like a cat with nine lives". Nine lives, as well as the fattest chequebook in Italy.

Allegations that several MPs, who had publicly announced they would vote against the government, were "cajoled" (or even "threatened") into realigning are gaining weight. This morning, opposition parties submitted to the courts "legal evidence" that a "trading operation" went on between Berlusconi's party and individual deputies.

In any other western democracy, the government would have some major explaining to do. In Italy it will just blow a raspberry.

[Photo : Italian politics in action this morning - from la Repubblica]


Anita said...

I guess then Italians may have to wait for nature to run its course.

Stan Moss said...

I expect your Tory guests on this blog to lecture us soon on Silvio Berlusconi being the lesser of two evils as well as the only bastion against the RED COMMUNIST DANGER that lurks around every Italian corner...!

claude said...

Totally, Stan.

A few years ago Emperor Berlusconi famously said that Mussolini's internment camps (where political opponents were sent to rot and die) were not so bad. They were "like holiday camps", he said, the twat.

Warped right-wing minds in full flow there.

It amuses me. Remember when every single thing that the Brown government was doing was branded as ILLIBERAL (!) with capital letters and explanation marks, POLICE STATE and so on. Five minutes later the same people are quite happy to play down whatever it is that Franco and various right-wing butchers did.

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

Italy is in a horrible state, actually moving backwards towards separatism. We may have a failed state on our hands.