Domenica, 21 Ottobre 2018
ROME

Bad weather forecast for Italian election, may affect result

English
© ANSA

Rome, February 22 - A wave of bad weather that has
gripped Italy is forecast to continue on Sunday and Monday, when
Italians vote in winter for the first time in a national
election, and the conditions may have a bearing on the result.
Parts of northern Italy were covered in snow on Friday and
schools in Catania were closed after a rainstorm swept cars away
and forced many people to take to the roofs of the eastern
Sicilian city Thursday.
Forecasters said more snow and storms are likely on
Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
Interior Minister Annamaria Cancellieri promised the bad
weather would not make it impossible to vote in the areas
affected.
"It's the first time that we are voting in winter and there
could be problems linked to the forecast bad weather,"
Cancellieri said Friday.
"So we have alerted the local prefect's offices and fire
brigades, so that they intervene to make it possible for all the
voters to reach the polling stations".
Bad weather may lead to a lower turnout, with the elderly
and people who are registered to vote in towns different from
the ones where they live less likely to vote.
Pollsters have said this may hit the support of established
groups, especially ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi's centre-right
alliance.
Berlusconi's alliance was in second place in the polls
before a pre-election survey blackout kicked in earlier this
month, trailing Pier Luigi Bersani's centre-left coalition by
around 5%.
They said new parties, such as the comedian Beppe Grillo's
Five Star Movement and the new left-wing Civic Revolution Group
of former anti-Mafia prosecutor Antonio Ingroia, are less likely
to be hit as they tend to have younger supporters.

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