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Renzi says no voter preferences in proposed system

8% threshold for parties to have seats in parliament

20 January, 18:12
Renzi says no voter preferences in proposed system (see related stories) (ANSA) - Rome, January 20 - Democratic Party (PD) leader Matteo Renzi said his proposed system for a new election law would not give voters the opportunity to express preferences for the candidates who they want to represent them on a party list.

A big problem with Italy's former election law was that the system of long 'blocked lists' of candidates gave voters little power in selecting representatives. This was part of the reason the law was ruled invalid by the Constitutional Court last month.

Renzi reportedly wants to get around the detachment this created between elector and elected with smaller constituencies and shorter lists of candidates so voters can have a better idea of who the potential MPs are in their area.

He added that his proposal is for a threshold of 8% of the vote for a party to have seats in parliament to prevent the system being too fragmented.

The threshold would be lower, 5%, for parties in a coalition.