Berlusconi ejection would be 'stain' on democracy
Media magnate calls on Letta to intervene29 October, 16:03
A Senate panel meet Tuesday to discuss whether a vote on the floor of the Upper House on stripping Berlusconi of his status as parliamentarian should be secret, as the current rules stipulate, or open, as wanted by many members of Premier Enrico Letta's centre-left Democratic Party and the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement.
It was examining, among other issues, the implications of a Milan appeals court's explanation of its decision to ban Berlusconi from holding public office for two years after the supreme court's ruling.
"The vote to have me ejected from parliament would be a stain on Italian democracy destined to remain in the history books," Berlusconi said in excerpts of an interview from a new book by Italian broadcast journalist Bruno Vespa.
Berlusconi risks losing his Senate seat on the basis of a 2012 anti-corruption law which he says is being applied retroactively in this case and so arguable against the Italian Constitution.
In the interview, Berlusconi called on Premier Enrico Letta, whose executive relies on the support of the 77-year-old's centre-right party, to intervene. "If the government wanted, it would have a highway to solving the problem," Berlusconi said.
"A justice bill is open for amendment and all it would take is a one-line interpretation measure that says the anti-corruption law does not apply to the past. Letta should say yes or no".
The supreme court's ruling on the tax fraud case came in August, long after the 2012 corruption law came into force, but the original conviction predates it.