Rome

73% of voters 'don't want Berlusconi to stand again'

67% of centre-right PdL supporters back the move

73% of voters 'don't want Berlusconi to stand again'

Rome, December 7 - The vast majority of eligible voters in Italy look unfavourably on Thursday's announcement by ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi that he would stand in upcoming general elections, according to an opinion poll published Friday. Polling institute SWG said 73% of the overall electorate disagreed with the decision. This figure dropped to 23% among supporters of Berlusconi's own party, the centre-right People of Freedom (PdL). PdL supporters however disagreed over their leader's next move: 27% thought the media magnate should run in party primaries, the object of wrangling and uncertainty for weeks; 27% that he should cancel them and remain as the party leader; and 23% that he should create a new party. On Thursday PdL secretary Angelino Alfano said Berlusconi's decision to "return to the field" made primaries pointless.

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