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Italian left scoops the pool in local elections

Italian left scoops the pool in local elections
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With the results coming in the right in Italy appears to be heading for a debacle in local elections. The left is on course to take all the major cities voting today, with the big prize, Rome, already having fallen to the Democratic party’s challenger Ignazio Marino.

He unseated Gianni Alemanno, standing for Silvio Berlusconi’s PdL party, who conceded defeat in a phone call once the overwhelming margin of defeat, some 20 percentage points, became clear.

However popular disillusionment with party politics has hit turnout hard; in Rome it may be just shy of 50%, when in 2008 it was 63%. Overall turnout nationally appears to be following the same trend.

Italy’s centre-left traditionally fares better in local elections than national ones, but this will be a shot in the arm for the left-led coalition government of Prime Minister Enrico Letta.