Cuts blamed for Italy's voter apathy

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The Independent Online

Low turnout and a crumbling centre-right vote in Italian local elections were blamed yesterday on austerity measures introduced by Mario Monti's technocrat administration and a series of corruption scandals, particularly on the right.

Almost 10 million Italians were eligible to vote in 941 towns and cities including Genoa, Palermo and Verona. But by yesterday, the second day of the two-day elections, the number bothering to vote appeared to be down more than 6 per cent compared with previous polls.

"I expect these elections to reflect unease because there is anger in the air," said Pier Luigi Bersani, head of the centre-left Democratic Party.