Italy's League Support Rises in Ipsos Poll as Five Star Slips

(Bloomberg) -- Support for Italian Deputy Premier Matteo Salvini’s League party is increasing, giving it the upper hand over its Five Star Movement coalition partner, which is led by Deputy Premier Luigi Di Maio, according to an Ipsos survey published in Corriere della Sera.

The League rose to 35.8 percent in the poll from 32.9 percent in a previous survey released on Dec. 21. Backing for Five Star fell to 25.4 percent from a previous 27 percent, according to the poll.

The Opposition Democratic Party declined slightly to 17.3 percent from a previous 18.1 percent, while Forza Italia led by former Premier Silvio Berlusconi, who announced his candidacy for European elections earlier in the week, is down to 7.1 percent from 8 percent.

The League’s strong showing increases its dominance over coalition partner Five Star which received more votes than the League in the March general elections that brought the two parties to power. Di Maio and Salvini remain divided over multiple issues including how to help the country’s struggling banks, and rumors that Salvini may abandon the coalition have multiplied.

Bloomberg reported that Salvini is considering dumping Five Star and returning to a coalition with the center-right, which could include the right-wing Brothers of Italy party, which is polling at 3.4 percent, and Berlusconi’s Forza Italia.

The poll of 1,000 adults was conducted Jan. 15-17.

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