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MP threatens to vote against government over property tax

Pasok's Michalis Kassis says more rural backbenchers feel the same way

Pasok MP says he will vote against property tax even if it means bringing down the government, which has been left with a precarious majority of four seats since last weekend's no confidence vote

Pasok MP Michalis Kassis Pasok MP Michalis Kassis A Pasok MP has said that he will not vote for the proposed single property tax even if it meant bringing down the government, which has a precarious majority of four seats since last weekend's no confidence vote.

Speaking on Mega TV, Michalis Kassis, who represents Ioannina, said that he has already told parliament that he could not vote for the proposed tax – which will tax agricultural buildings for the first time- "under no circumstances".

"Are they going to tell me that I'm bringing down the government and that I have to vote for whatever? That these things cannot be highlighted and cannot be changed? Under no circumstances (will I vote for this) … I said it from the floor of the parliament that I'll take the megaphone and go out (protesting) on Syntagma. If that's their logic, let the government fall and may the Virgin Mary look after them!" he said.

Rural bankbenchers like Kassis in Pasok and New Democracy have been outspoken in their opposition to the proposal to tax farm buildings.

Kassis did say that if the proposed law was based on proportionality, where everyone paid according to his assets, then he "would agree and I'll take everything he said back".

'Leninist type'

Meanwhile, a New Democracy MP and former minister described the finance minister as taking a "Leninist stance" towards the proposed tax. Vryon Polydoras said Yannis Stournaras was being "inaccurate and provocative towards the middle class" when he claimed on Sunday that the tax was "the fairest for everyone". 

The minister's position, Polydoras said, concealed "a Leninist stance as reflected in the decrees on the expropriation of land and property passed by the Soviet congress on 8 November 1917. He added that this was "unacceptable under in democracies and market economies".  

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