First results from Italian election

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Monday, April 10, 2006

Incumbent PM Silvio Berlusconi.

On 9 and 10 April 2006, Italians voted to elect members of Parliament as well as the country's next Prime Minister.

The election was fought mainly between coalitions: the centre-left L'Unione (The Union), led by Romano Prodi, and the currently-ruling centre-right House of Freedoms, led by incumbent Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi. Initial polls do not indicate a clear winner.

The main party in L'Unione is the Federation of the Olive Tree, and the House Of Freedoms' main party is Berlusconi's Forza Italia party.

It is expected that no party will obtain an outright majority of seats. Polls closed on Monday at 3 p.m. CEST (1300 UTC).

According to Italian law, the Prime Minister must have the support of both houses of Parliament: the Senate (the upper house) and the Chamber of Deputies (the lower house).

Exit Polls

First Exit Polls of Nexus published by major newspapers at 15:00 (local time) give the following partial results:

L'Unione (The Union) Chamber (of Deputies): 50% - 54%

L'Unione (The Union) Senate: 50% - 54%

House of Freedoms Chamber (of Deputies): 45% - 49%

House of Freedoms Senate: 45% - 49%

Later exit polls showed House of Freedoms in the lead in both houses.

These are based on mock voting booths outside 1,050 polling stations across the country that are expected to be representative samples, where people can anonymously indicate how they voted. The margin of error on Nexus's exit polls is 2 percentage points.