Italian election: who will get first chance to form a government?

The Five Star Movement is the largest party in the latest opinion polls ahead of the Italian election, but the centre-right coalition would command more seats.

According to the latest opinion polls in Italy, Luigi Di Maio, the young leader of the Five Star Movement, could get the first chance to form Italy’s next government. If he fails, then the baton would likely pass to the centre-right coalition of parties.

A new electoral law in Italy, Rosatellum bis, is making the pollsters' task more difficult, especially when calculating seats in parliament. Looking at the most recent projections, the Five Star Movement would be the largest single party with between 27% and 30% of the vote, and between 150 and 190 of the seats in the 316 seat Chamber of Deputies.

If this proves correct, it would be an excellent result for Di Maio, who would lead his party to a significant improvement on the 88 deputies it currently has. The Five Star Movement leader has already expressed an intention to form a government with anyone interested in accepting his programme, in the event that he wins less than 40% of the vote.

Some parties have already approached Five Star Movement, like the Free and Equal party, led by Pietro Grasso, but it doesn’t currently have the backing to make a majority. In recent days rumors have circulated about an unlikely alliance between Five Star Movement and League.

The center-right coalition alone would not have the numbers to govern. According to the polls, the coalition stands at between 34% and 38% of the vote. A party or coalition needs above 40% to form a stable government.

There’s the possibility that a technical government is created through broad policy agreements between parties, but there’s also the possibility that Italians will have to return to the election booths before the end of the year.

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