Italy's constitutional court mulls electoral law

AP News
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Posted: Jan 24, 2017 6:52 AM

ROME (AP) — Italy's constitutional court is hearing a series of challenges to the country's electoral law, the outcome of which could help determine when new elections are held.

The 2015 law under review governs elections for the lower 630-seat Chamber of Deputies. Among other things it assigns a bonus to the majority party if it reaches 40 percent threshold.

It was adopted under the assumption that parliament's upper Senate chamber would be reformed. Italians, however, overwhelmingly rejected the proposed Senate reforms in a Dec. 4 referendum, leading to Matteo Renzi's resignation as premier.

Renzi's successor, Premier Paolo Gentiloni, is running the government until new elections can be held. Most political forces agree that a new electoral law must be passed before any vote, taking into account the constitutional court's ruling expected Tuesday.