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The impeachment of Traian Basescu in an overwhelming vote Friday could lead to a national referendum on the president.
Romanian lawmakers impeached President Traian Basescu in an overwhelming vote Friday.
The move paves the way for a national referendum that could lead to his ousting from office, the Associated Press reported.
The parliamentary vote was 256-114.
According to Bloomberg Businessweek, Basescu has less than a month to regain the public trust and defeat a referendum on his impeachment. Senate Speaker Crin Antonescu, who is now the country's interim president, announced Romanians will vote July 29 on the referendum.
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The public is angry over tough austerity measures Basescu enacted. Meanwhile, critics have said the president overstepped his authority by meddling in judicial matters, as well as economically with his 2010 budget cuts.
He is also accused of making racist remarks about Gypsies and disabled people, according to Guardian.
“I have a clear conscience that I fulfilled my duty towards the country and my people,” Basescu told lawmakers on Thursday. “Please take care of the country, respect the law, create jobs and -- the most important -- don’t touch the judicial system or the state institutions.”
Basescu was impeached in 2007 but survived a referendum, Bloomberg reported.