Elections Red Check: Italy Rejects the Communists

Italy rejects the Communists

Italy's powerful Communist Party went into last week's local and regional elections in a buoyant mood. After all, in last year's balloting for Italian candidates for the European Parliament, the Communists had outpolled the country's largest party, the Christian Democrats, by 34.5% to 33%. It was the first time the Italian Communists had come in first in a nationwide vote. Before last week's elections, however, Socialist Prime Minister Benedetto ("Bettino") Craxi, who heads the five-party governing coalition, threatened to resign if the Communists again emerged as the leading party. The outcome was in doubt until the end because no forecasts were...

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