Today, the Italian Senate will vote at 8:30 PM whether to formally expel the 76-year old former prime minister, Sylvio Berlusconi. Concurrently, the winner of three of the six Italian elections in the past 20 days will launch a delayed nationwide address on his political future. The contents of said address are unclear however, as Reuters reports, “
Angelino Alfano, secretary of Berlusconi’s center-right People of Freedom (PDL) party, said his leader would make a final decision on the government only after the vote, where Letta’s Democratic Party (PD) says it will support expulsion.
In recent days, the billionaire businessman has appeared to step back from threats to bring down the government over the vote, which follows a conviction for tax fraud in early August.
Instead he is expected to resurrect his first political party, Forza Italia (Go Italy), rail against leftist judges he accuses of persecuting him and vow to remain in politics despite the conviction which will confine him to house arrest or community service for most of the next year.
He wants Forza Italia to replace the PDL in an attempt to revitalize center-right voters and appeal to young people.
Political sources say Berlusconi appears to have listened to PDL doves, business allies and members of his family who believe sparking a crisis now could badly rebound on the center-right as well as damaging his media empire financially.
All of this would be great news if Berlusconi was a stable, rational person, who listened to reason. Alas, none of that is applicable.