Like several politicians before him, Silvio Berlusconi was caught out by a powerful camera lens and carelessly placed notes yesterday.

A photographer snapped shots of Berlusconi's notes outlining a number of thoughts about his future.

Berlusconi, who had already been told to go earlier in the day by his coalition partners, walked into the chamber clutching a note with various options scribbled down, according to the newspaper Corriere della Sera.

It said: "A confidence vote? I quit? A technical government? Re-election?" Each option was followed by a list of pros and cons.

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He also wrote another note during Democratic Party leader Pierluigi Bersani's speech. Opponents within his own party would have been relieved at his decision to quit after another photograph showed him with a list of "traitors" who had told him they would not back him in the budget vote.

- Independent