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Italy PM casts ballot in future-deciding vote

Sunday, December 04, 2016 - 00:43

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi casts his vote in a referendum, following a promise to resign if he loses. Rough cut (no reporter narration).

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Prime Minister Matteo Renzi cast his vote on Sunday (December 4) in a referendum on constitutional reform which will decide his political future as he promised to resign if he loses. About 51 million Italians are eligible to vote on Renzi's plan to drastically reduce the role of the upper house Senate and claw back powers from regional authorities. Financial markets and Europe's politicians fear victory for the opposition 'No' camp could trigger political instability and renewed turmoil for Italy's battered banks, pushing the euro zone towards a fresh crisis. With all the opposition parties lined up against the reform, a victory for Renzi would be a surprise and represent an enormous personal triumph for Italy's youngest prime minister who often appeared to be fighting the campaign single-handed. With bookmakers' odds suggesting a roughly 75 percent chance of a win for 'No', speculation is rife on what Renzi will do in the event of defeat. He is widely expected to resign and has said he will play no role in any unelected, "technical" government, which President Sergio Mattarella may try to put in place. Some of his allies have urged him to stay in power regardless of the result. However, in the final days of frenetic campaigning Renzi insisted the public mood was changing, focusing his attention on the millions of Italians who said they were undecided.

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Italy PM casts ballot in future-deciding vote

Sunday, December 04, 2016 - 00:43