Mr Guglielmo Epifani, the secretary of the Democratic Party, confirmed that Mr Silvio Berlusconi’s conviction cannot be ignored and that he should step down from Parliament.
Mr Epifani’s statements were greeted with anger by Mr Berlusconi’s party. Its spokesperson, Mr Daniele Capezzone, labeled the secretary’s position as ‘something out of this world’. According to its speaker in the Chamber of Deputies, Mr Renato Brunetta, ‘the end of the Government should be contemplated’. Another of Berlusconi’s MP, Mr Fabrizio Cicchitto, called Mr Epifani ‘a hypocrite’, while for the People of Freedom speaker in the Senate, Mr Renato Schifani, the secretary’s words are ‘a provocation’.
In general, the political climate is rapidly worsening. Mrs Daniela Santaché, one of the most hawkish members of Mr Berlusconi’s party, said that the country should ‘get ready for new elections’. In the meantime, the Higher Council of Judiciary opened an investigation against Mr Antonio Esposito, the President of the Summer Section of the Italian Supreme Court which upheld the Cavaliere’s conviction. The judge has been criticized for talking about the case to the main Naples newspaper before the the final judgement is officially filed in Chancery. The opening of the investigation was requested by Berlusconi’s representatives in the Council
By Italian Constitution, the Higher Council of Judiciary has eight members elected by the Parliament, including the Vice-President.