Berlusconi Expelled Italy

November 28, 2013 by  

Berlusconi Expelled Italy, The Italian Senate has voted to expel ex-Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi from parliament with immediate effect over his conviction for tax fraud.

Berlusconi, who has dominated politics for 20 years, could now face arrest over other criminal cases as he has lost his immunity from prosecution.

He told supporters in Rome it was a “day of mourning” for democracy.

Ahead of the vote, he vowed to remain in politics to lead his Forza Italia in a “fight for the good of Italy”.

So Berlusconi has been flung out of parliament; forced to step back from the front lines of the fray.

He has taken a major blow to his pride and capacity to operate as a politician. And in that way he has been weakened and marginalised.

There’s a sense that his legal and political troubles are growing, and feeding into one another. But from outside parliament, he will continue to pour his energy into leading his party, which enjoys considerable electoral support.

He has huge financial resources to throw at his political ambitions. And he has a media empire that beams his message into countless Italian homes. He will remain a force in Italian politics.

The Berlusconi show is far from over.

A defiant Berlusconi told supporters gathered outside his Rome residence that “no political leader has suffered a persecution such as I have lived through”.

He said: “It is a bitter day, a day of mourning.”

Berlusconi, 77, said his struggle would continue outside parliament.

He said: “We must stay on the field, we must not despair if the leader of the centre-right is not a senator any more. There are leaders of other parties who are not parliamentarians.”

The vote marks the end of a process which determines that Berlusconi cannot take part in any general election for six years.

The BBC’s Alan Johnston in Rome says that Berlusconi has been flung out of parliament in the most humiliating of circumstances – effectively told that as a convicted felon he is no longer fit for public office.

Our correspondent says that, while there is no question this is a major blow to the former PM’s political ambitions, the Berlusconi show is far from over – he will continue to lead Forza Italia outside parliament, a party that has considerable electoral support.

The debate in the Senate had been heated, with two rival senators nearly coming to blows.

Silvio Berlusconi: “Even if one is not a member of parliament one can continue to fight for our freedom”

Manuela Ripetti of Berlusconi’s Forza Italia party shouted: “Your only aim is to eliminate Silvio Berlusconi!”

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