Italy center-left seen with slim lead in lower house: TV polls

ROME Mon Feb 25, 2013 2:50pm EST

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ROME (Reuters) - Italy's center-left coalition holds a slim lead over former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's center-right bloc in the election for the lower house of parliament, three TV projections indicated on Monday.

A Mediaset projection showed the center-left group led by Pier Luigi Bersani winning 29.6 percent in the lower house, the center-right on 28.2 percent, with the 5-Star Movement on 26 percent and Mario Monti's centrist bloc on 10.8 percent.

A Sky Italia forecast had the center-left on 30.9 percent, followed by the center-right on 27.7 percent, Beppe Grillo's movement on 25.6 percent and Monti's centrists on 10.4 percent.

In a third projection, TV channel La7 showed the center-left on 29.2 percent, the center-right on 28.3 percent, the 5-Star Movement on 26.4 percent and Monti's bloc on 10.9 percent.

The coalition or party that wins the most votes in the lower house gains an automatic majority of 340 of 630 seats, but any government must also command a majority in the Senate, a race that is decided by region.

Projections indicate that the center-right is leading in the Senate but that no coalition will have enough seats to be able to form a majority in the upper house.

(Reporting by Naomi O'Leary; editing by James Mackenzie)

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