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Portugal’s political fate uncertain after govt budget defeat

By BARRY HATTON
Associated Press

LISBON, Portugal (AP) — Portugal’s president says the ballot box is the best way of breaking a political stalemate after the country’s parliament threw out the government’s proposed state budget for next year. But the head of state’s plan to hold a snap election could backfire by producing an even more volatile political battleground. President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa said before the budget vote Wednesday that he would call an early poll if lawmakers rejected the government’s proposal, which they did. Opinion polls indicate that no single party would clinch a parliamentary majority in an election. At stake is Portugal’s ambition of swiftly deploying tens of billions of euros (dollars) in post-pandemic recovery aid from the European Union.

Associated Press

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