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(Upd) Greece: “Horrified” Lawmakers to Vote for Austerity Package, after all?

Ok, boys, Greeks are horrified! The deputies, not the citizens…. They are horrified that if the Mid-Term Austerity Programme is not adopted by the Parliament we all land in the bankruptcy package. A non-stop government propaganda by high ranking officials from morning til the evening, the clumsy dilemma ‘Mid-Term or Tanks’, the EU-ultimatum “Vote or go bankrupt” by Rombay/Rehn and extraordinary pressure “you vote or you’re out of the party” seem to have convinced those governing party PASOK deputies who dared to express objections about the odious package.

Weird enough the majority of the so-call ‘wanne be rebels’ deputies didn’t seem to be concerned about the the economic plight and the hardships of Greek citizens. No, no. The main concern of at least two ‘defiant’ deputies was the privatization plans of the Programme and thus those referring to Electricity Power company (DEH) and the Water Company of Thessaloniki.

To make the long story of deputies’ motives and voters’ interests short, according to Greek media, for the time being there is only one PASOK deputy insisting not to vote the Mid-Term Programme, should the DEH be privatized. This has been reported at prime time news this evening.

“Of course, there can be surprises” media said…. Then who is irresponsible and crazy enough to give a sure bet for tomorrow’s voting outcome.

Furthermore, the Mid-Term Package allegedly has found some supporters in opposition parties.  At least one (maybe even two) from centre-right Nea Dimokratia may abandon the party voting orders and say Yes on Wednesday. Also ex-FM, ex-ND, Dora Bakoyanni has advised the three deputies of her tiny political party to vote ‘according to consience’.

PASOK has 155 seats in a Parliament of 300. The Package can be adopted with simple majority of 151 votes.

On Wednesday, June 29th, 2011, the debate will start at 10 a.m. The voting will start at 2 p.m.

“Indignant” Greeks are set to start their protests as early as 8 o’ clock in the morning. They plan a human chain around the Parliament to prevent lawmakers to enter. This has been done before, and the deputies did enter the Parliament, even though some had difficulties in …exiting.

They have also advised motorists to take their cars downtown and drive extremely slowly with 10-20 km/h in order to cause traffic jams and make deputies arrive late. After the voting? I don’t think so.

More “Indignant” Greeks are expected to arrive in Athens from other parts of Greece.

“Indignant” Greeks, normal protesters and labour unionists will gather outside the Parliament.

Wednesday is the second day of the general strike organized by labour unions of public and private sector.

From what my friends told me, from what I saw on television, Greek citizens believe that the Mid-Term Package will be adopted in the Parliament.

Meanwhile, Reuters report that Default unlikely for now even if Greece votes “no”.

If you want to know what happened on Tuesday in downtown Athens with the riots, the clashes and the tear gas, check our Athens June 28: Live Streaming & Blogging in English

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  1. friend from Serbia

    So far I’ve read a lot about how EU/MMF/etc see the situation in Greece, but for some reason unions in Greece believe that austerity is not needed. Educate me, how do protesters see the debt situation be resolved and bankruptcy avoided? I mean, I doubt you are suicidal in nature, so you must have an idea to present that would be better than the austerity push but I can’t seem to find info on it anywhere. And please don’t say “politicians and banks should pay” because politicians deal with your (tax) money and banks are limited liability companies that you cannot drain much money from even if you nationalize them. Also please no communist propaganda. So realistically and to the point, what IS the solution for Greece that does not involve austerity and/or bailout but allows Greek citizens to maintain and/or improve their life quality or at the very least avoid a huge drop in that quality?

  2. Since we now know that default will be unlikely if Greece votes “no,” what is the excuse of the PASOK members for voting for it? I thought it was to save Greece from catastrophe, but now we see the catastrophe (that they predict) won’t happen… Why, why, why can’t there be several members of PASOK who will pull a fast one and vote “no”? Don’t they look outside the window and see what is going on? Do they think the government is going to last long?

    Thanks for your reporting!

    I hope a miracle happens and Greece, the Greek people that is, win.

  3. I’m betting the farm on this vote. If this doesn’t go through I’ll probably lose 40% of my retirement account.