Portugal's political feuds heat up as parties await president's decision on next government

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Portugal's outgoing prime minister is demanding changes to the Constitution to allow an early general election but the Socialist leader who forced him out is saying no.

Outgoing center-right Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho said late Thursday a new ballot would remove any suspicion of misrepresentation in his removal from power by a leftist alliance of anti-austerity lawmakers led by the Socialist Party.

The unprecedented alliance, formed after an Oct. 4 general election, used its parliamentary majority to unseat the government in a vote Tuesday. That left the Portuguese president to decide whether to invite Socialist leader Antonio Costa to take power or install a caretaker government.

The Portuguese Constitution says a new ballot cannot be held for six months.