Berlusconi's coalition closes gap in latest poll

ROME -- According to a recent survey, Silvio Berlusconi has reduced the difference between his center-right coalition and that of the left to four percent.

Silvio Berlusconi (Beta, file)
Silvio Berlusconi (Beta, file)

Two weeks remain until parliamentary elections are held in Italy. Two months ago the left, led by former Communist Pier Bersani, was 15 to 20 percent ahead of Berlusconi's coalition.

This is the sixth time that Berlusconi will go to the polls, AFP reported.

According to a research carried out by the Institute Demopolis, the left-wing parties now have 33.6 percent support, and their rivals 28.5 percent.

According to a survey conducted by the Institute of Tecne, the left has 33.1 percent, while the right-wing coalition can count on 29.4 percent. The Piepoli Institute puts the figures at 35.5 and 30.5 percent, respectively.

"The difference between the two groups is about four percent and I think it will stay that way. It takes about three months of campaigning to significantly change the results of surveys, rather than fifteen days," pollster Nicola Piepoli told La Stampa.

"Berlusconi has done the best he could, but Bersani is in the lead and will remain there," said Piepoli.

Roberto Weber of the SWG Institute, said, "I expect the margin seen today to be confirmed after the vote."

Most of the polls place outgoing Prime Minister Mario Monti in fourth place behind comedian turned politician Beppe Grillo and his Five Star Movement, AFP reported.

Between 30 and 35 percent of voters are still undecided or will abstain.