It is a vote some believe may lead to the collapse of the Italian government. Next year’s budget is to be put to a ballot tonight or tomorrow in the Senate after weeks of wrangling. Despite having a wafer thin majority in the Senate, the government is confident it will win. It is dismissing opposition claims that it is facing defections in the upper house.
Renato Schifani from the opposition Forza Italia party says the ruling coalition is facing a serious crisis. He says they are “not united” and had to postpone the vote yesterday over a key article. He says they do not have the necessary numbers to approve the budget.
But Anna Finocchiaro from the ruling coalition says they are “quite relaxed”. She says they have “already voted hundreds of times and are ready for the final vote”.
Prime Minister Romano Prodi briefly resigned in February after losing a foreign policy vote in the Senate. But he was able to stay in office after winning confidence votes in both houses of parliament. The budget goes to the lower house after the vote in the Senate.