Bersani leads in exit poll for centre-left leader
The head of Italy’s Democratic Party, Pier Luigi Bersani, was in the lead after the primary to choose the main centre-left candidate in next year’s national election, ahead of his main rival, Matteo Renzi, according to an exit poll yesterday.
The exit survey by the Piepoli polling institute for RAI News 24 showed Mr Bersani with 44 per cent support, Mr Renzi with 36 per cent, and Nichi Vendola, governor of the southern region of Puglia on 16 per cent.
Mr Bersani (61) had been favourite to win the race before voting began on Sunday, in part because of his control of the Democratic Party (PD) machine and his support among the party’s core voters.
However, a stronger than expected turnout in the primary, which was not restricted to PD members, increased expectations that Mr Renzi, the 37-year-old mayor of Florence, would do well because of his appeal to voters outside the party.
If none of the five candidates in the primary wins an absolute majority after yesterday’s vote, a run-off between the two leaders will be held on December 2nd. – (Reuters)