Thailand’s president and his Cabinet were forced from office today because the prime minister hosted cooking shows on TV. Samak Sundaravej hosted the show “Tasting and Complaining” for seven years before he became prime minister. But when he hosted a show after he took office, he violated Article 267 of Thailand’s Constitution, which prohibits the PM from holding private employment while in office.
Samak’s opponents have portrayed him as a proxy for former PM Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted in a 2006 coup. The Thai government has been virtually paralyzed for weeks, amid corruption scandals that have shaken financial markets and scared away tourists.
The 9-member Constitutional Court ruled that Samak’s hosting of the TV show – for which he was paid $560 plus expenses – violated the constitution.