Berlusconi's party 'ready to walk out' if banned from office
Supporters threaten to bring down government25 September, 19:26
Repeating a threat they have made many times, legislative leaders of the former People of Freedom (PdL) party said they could walk out and permit the crash of the fragile coalition government, led by centre-left Premier Enrico Letta.
Sources say that the FI leaders in the House and Senate - Renato Brunetta and Renato Schifani respectively - planned late-night strategy meetings for Wednesday to plot their next course of action.
That could include allowing the government to fall, followed by demands for dissolution of parliament and new elections.
Since Berlusconi's definitive conviction for tax fraud more than one month ago, his supporters have been threatening to pull out of the government if their PD partners vote to eject the PdL and FI founder from the Senate.