A number of weeks ago, before the parliamentary recess for Easter, the Bulgarian opposition filed a no-confidence motion against the government. The motion was lodged when the government announced that it would scrap the Belene nuclear power plant.
According to Novinite, the signatures of at least 20% of the total number of deputies are required to file such a motion. So, 48 signatures are necessary. The motion was signed by the right-wing Ataka party and the Bulgarian Socialist Party.
Last week, the Ataka party ‘withdrew’ its signatures from the motion, leaving only 39 valid signatures. This raised the question of whether or not the party could actually withdraw its signatures once they had been officially recorded. It also raised the question, therefore, of whether or not the motion should be put to a vote. Everyone was aware that, if put, the motion would be defeated. However, should it be debated at all?
Yesterday, parliament discussed the issue. In the end, 135 deputies voted against even discussing the motion and 35 voted in favour of tabling it. Therefore, the motion was never debated.
So, the government has survived because there was no no-confidence motion. I really like these sort of parliamentary goings-on.