In this Jan. 19, 2013 photo Pier Luigi Bersani and Umberto Ambrosoli meet in Milan, Italy. Lombardy, Italy's most populous and economically productive region, is a key battleground in t

 

              In this Jan. 19, 2013 photo Pier Luigi Bersani and Umberto Ambrosoli meet in Milan, Italy. Lombardy, Italy
In this Jan. 19, 2013 photo Pier Luigi Bersani and Umberto Ambrosoli meet in Milan, Italy. Lombardy, Italy's most populous and economically productive region, is a key battleground in the upcoming national elections, with the regional race not only likely to determine who can most reliably govern the euro zone's third-largest economy but also testing emerging political alliances. Polls show that the center-right coalition led by Silvio Berlusconi and the center-left forces backing Democratic Party leader Pier Luigi Bersani's bid for premier are neck-and-neck in Lombardy, geographically centered around the financial and fashion capital Milan, marking the first time in the Berlusconi era that the left has had such a strong showing in region where the media mogul made his mark. (AP Photo/Alessandro Treves, Lapresse) ITALY OUT