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Italy's center-left to win lower house, leads in Senate race

English.news.cn   2013-02-26 13:29:09            
 • Italy's center-left coalition secured a narrow victory in the lower house.
 • Final results are still hanging in the air as Bersani's coalition only won 121 seats in the Senate.
 • It's impossible for Bersani to guarantee 158 seats unless he forms a coalition with his rivals.

 

 ITALY-ROME-ELECTIONS

Stefano Fassina, spokesman for the Democratic Party, talks to the media in Rome, Italy, Feb. 25, 2013. The center-left coalition is set to win control of Italy's lower house after votes from 99.9 percent of polling stations had been counted, but is short of winning a majority in the Senate, according to data from the Interior Ministry early Tuesday. (Xinhua/Xu Nizhi)  

ROME, Feb. 26 (Xinhua) -- The center-left coalition is set to win control of Italy's lower house but is short of winning a majority in the Senate, according to statistics released by the Interior Ministry early Tuesday.

The data were based on votes from 99.9 percent of polling stations, showing that Democratic Party leader Pier Luigi Bersani and his leftist coalition secured a narrow victory in the lower house with 29.55 percent of the ballots counted, only 0.38 percent higher than Silvio Berlusconi's alliance.

However, the election's final results are still hanging in the air as frontrunner Bersani's coalition only won 121 seats in the 315-seat Senate, while billionaire Berlusconi won 117 seats.

According to Italy's electoral laws, any party or coalition needs 158 seats in the Senate to become a majority. The party that ranks first but falls short of a majority in the Senate will be given additional seats to reach majority on a regional basis.

The "Bonus rule" has lessened the predictability of the final results as Bersani lost most of the key regions to Berlusconi, while Five Star Movement's Beppe Grillo surprisingly grabbed dozens of seats, making it impossible for Bersani to guarantee 158 seats unless he forms a coalition with his rivals.

The party or the coalition that wins the most votes in the lower house can be assigned to form a new government. But a prime minister needs the support of both the lower house and the Senate to govern, as both houses have equal law-making powers, which makes the country's voting system notoriously complex and difficult to be understood even by Italians.

Earlier on Monday, outgoing Prime Minister Mario Monti complained that a similar "Bonus rule" in the lower house could be disproportionate to the voting result.

Related:

Italy's center-left coalition leads in parliamentary election: exit polls

ROME, Feb. 25 (Xinhua) -- Italy's center-left coalition led by Pier Luigi Bersani has shown a lead in the parliamentary election, national TV channel RAI News said on Monday citing exit polls.

The center-left gained 35 to 37 percent of votes in the lower house, beating ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi's center-right and other candidates in order to be assigned of forming a new government. Full story

Italy's election outcome presents political gridlock

ROME, Feb. 25 (Xinhua) -- Neither center-left Pier Luigi Bersani nor center-right Silvio Berlusconi will obtain a majority in the Senate, according to interior ministry's official vote count, pushing Italy's crucial parliamentary election into a rare political gridlock that has rocked global markets.

The frontrunner Bersani leads in the lower house but can not secure a majority of seats in the Senate, thus forcing him to ally with either Berlusconi or Five Star Movement's Beppe Grillo if forming a government. Full story

Italy's center-left coalition leads in parliamentary election: exit polls

ROME, Feb. 25 (Xinhua) -- Italy's center-left coalition led by Pier Luigi Bersani has shown a lead in the parliamentary election, national TV channel RAI News said on Monday citing exit polls.

The center-left gained 35 to 37 percent of votes in the lower house, beating ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi's center-right and other candidates in order to be assigned of forming a new government. Full story

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Editor: Lu Hui
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