Members of the centre-right had left the Senate to deprive the centre-left of the quorum; immediately after the vote, they complained that the quorum had been calculated incorrectly. As Altero Matteoli explains,
"There are 322 senators; 4 were on mission, so the total goes down to 318, half of which is 159. So there wasn't the legal number, that's 160 [50% + 1]".
Marini explained however that "to the 159 present one always adds the non-voting President - there's no doubt about it".
Although the centre-left won this vote, 16 senators from six parties (Verdi, PRC, PDCI, SVP, IdV, DS) defected on other provisions of the bill. It remains to be seen whether these sixteen will form a future 'awkward squad'.
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