Berlusconi’s party gaining support despite sex scandals

Monday, January 24, 2011

LONDON - It looks like the latest scandal over Italy’s prime minister Silvio Berlusconi’s riotous private life has done nothing to weaken his supporters’ faith in him.

A poll was carried out last week, as controversy raged over the findings of an investigation by prosecutors in Milan, which had been delivered to parliament on 17 December.

These included claims by a participant that Berlusconi hosted a party for more than 20 women that turned into an orgy.

Berlusconi is formally suspected of paying an underage prostitute and trying to cover it up by exerting pressure on the police.

Yet the poll found that backing for his Freedom People movement was higher than a month earlier, and less than half of Italians believed he should resign, reports the Guardian.

It found that, if an election was held immediately, more than 30 percent of voters would support his party, compared with less than 28 percent in December.

Berlusconi’s Freedom People movement, together with its main ally, the Northern League, could garner almost 41 percent.

Renato Mannheimer, the head of the company that conducted the poll, said “even the Catholic electorate … does not appear to have significantly altered its preferences”.

For the first time, the number of Italians favouring Berlusconi’s resignation exceeded the number who opposed it, but they represented only 49 percent of the electorate.

The poll was published by Corriere della Sera. (ANI)

Filed under: Politics

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