Greek prosecutor says opposition lawmaker's bribe claim over presidential vote is unfounded

A judicial investigation has dismissed a Greek lawmaker's allegations that he was offered money to back the government candidate in the country's fraught presidential vote.

Court officials said Monday that prosecutor Panagiotis Panagiotopoulos said last week's claim by Pavlos Haikalis, a lawmaker from a small opposition right-wing party, was unfounded.

The three-step presidential vote in bailed-out Greece is crucial, as it could prompt early parliamentary elections.

The conservative-led government is struggling to bring opposition lawmakers over to its side in Tuesday's second round of voting, which has opposition parties crying foul.

The third vote is on Dec. 29, with the government candidate needing 180 ballots — 20 more than it received in last week's first vote in the 300-seat parliament.