Cuperlo calls banning Berlusconi from the Senate 'a given'
PD candidate leader says concept of democracy at stake23 August, 14:04
"We are not in the government at any cost. In this match we are playing with our souls," said Gianni Cuperlo.
Banning Berlusconi from public office "is a necessary act, a given. The right must understand that we can not retreat by even a millimetre, because our concept of democracy is at stake," Cuperlo went on.
"We never imagined resolving the issue by judicial means," assured Cuperlo, who sees removing Berlusconi from the Senate as a question of "consistency" with "principles of a state ruled by law".
The PD, he said, "will not split. It won't give way on principle. Should it give way, there will simply be no PD".
"What doesn't work on the right is its idea that electoral consensus is a power that subordinates all others. But that is the premiss of absolutism, the opposite of an equilibrium of powers elaborated over a couple of centuries," Cuperlo concluded.
Premier Letta met President Giorgio Napolitano Thursday in a last-ditch bid to avert government crisis.
The PD has turned a deaf ear to appeals from Berlusconi's People of Freedom (PdL) party to refrain from voting Berlusconi out of the Senate next month as a consequence of his August 1 conviction for tax fraud, his first definitive sentence in almost 20 years of battles with a judiciary he claims is left-wing.
Berlusconi is insisting he must be allowed to continue as PdL leader and can only do that as a Senator. Otherwise, the PdL will pull the plug on the four-month old right-left coalition administration Napolitano forced into existence after a two-month post-election impasse earlier this year.