The League party, led by populist Italian interior minister Matteo Salvini, continues to climb in the polls with trends showing it could top as high as 40 per cent.
A poll released by polling firm SWG conducted on behalf of the television programme La7 showed another increase in support for Salvini’s party, rising 0.2 per cent to 38 per cent and trending towards 40 per cent, Italian newspaper Il Giornale reports.
The current trend, if carried over to a national election, could see the League as one of Italy’s most popular post-World War II parties, rivalling the now-defunct Christian Democracy party which held a record 48.51 per cent of the vote in the 1948 election.
The League’s coalition partners the Five Star Movement (M5S), which was the single largest party in the 2018 election, has continued its slide in the polls, receiving just 17.3 per cent — a proportion nearly half that of its last election result.
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The left-wing Democratic Party (PD) has surpassed the M5S and saw a 0.5 per cent increase to 22 per cent. The PD also came second in the European Parliament elections earlier this year but trailed behind the League.
During the 2018 election, the League was allied with the national-conservative Brothers of Italy (FdI) and former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia (Forward Italy). The poll reveals that the FdI, led by firebrand Georgia Meloni, now ranks higher than the former prime minister’s party.
The poll comes as the Italian populist government remains on shaky ground since the European Parliament elections in May. Disagreements between Salvini and M5S leader Luigi Di Maio have fueled speculation about a possible crisis and collapse of the government with rumours of an early election in the autumn.
Earlier this week, Il Giornale reported on a possible alliance between the M5S and the PD after former PD secretary in Sicily Davide Faraone claiming he was kicked out of the party for publicly saying ‘no’ to an alliance between the two parties.