ROME Feb 26 Italy's centre-left coalition will
win a majority in the lower house of parliament but the upper
house will be deadlocked, the Interior Ministry said on Tuesday
after almost all votes were counted.
After 99.9 percent of the polling booths had been tallied,
the centre-left led the centre-right by about 125,000 votes in
the lower house, handing it a sizeable majority thanks to a
generous winner's bonus.
But the Senate was a different story. The centre left was
sure to win more seats than the centre right in the upper house,
but fell well short of a majority, even in coalition with
outgoing Prime Minister Mario Monti's help.
Since both houses are needed to pass laws, the centre left
would need the help of comic Beppe Grillo's 5-Star Movement or
Silvio Berlusconi's centre right to pass laws, currently an
unlikely prospect. If no agreement can be reached, a new vote
would have to be called.