Greece's austerity budget debated

Dec. 7, 2013 at 3:37 PM
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ATHENS, Greece, Dec. 7 (UPI) -- Greek lawmakers are debating a conservative spending plan that would continue deeply unpopular austerity measures, officials said.

Though the budget is expected to pass, with conservatives holding a four-seat edge in the chamber, opposition leaders and labor unions have joined together to protest it.

Prime Minister Antonis Samaras was rallying fellow conservatives in private meetings Friday night ahead of Saturday's parliamentary debate. The budget calls for deep spending cuts and posts a primary surplus for the present fiscal year and the next, Ekathimerini reported.

Opposition MP Stathis Panagoulis predicted Samaras' New Democracy party would face recriminations from voters over the budget plan.

"I suggest that you prepare yourselves psychologically because in a few months you will have to sit on the benches of the political opposition," Panagoulis said.

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