Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta won a confidence vote on the 2014 budget, reinforcing his coalition government a day before the Senate is expected to ban center-right leader Silvio Berlusconi from parliament over a tax fraud conviction.
Berlusconi’s Forza Italia party voted against the so-called Stability Law, which it described as “completely mistaken, with neither head nor tail”, formalizing its break with Letta after seven months in his left-right coalition.
The measure passed in the Senate shortly after midnight with a majority of 171 to 135, helped by the votes of rebel senators who broke away from Berlusconi earlier this month.
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