Campaigning in Italy's nationwide regional and local elections ended on Friday (13 June) with two major rallies in the capital, Rome.
GTV Large crowd chanting for Fanfani and waving banners and flags
SV Fanfani on rostrum with supporters and close friends
GTV Crowd cheers, waves, and waves flags and banners PAN TO Fanfani on rostrum preparing to give speech
SCU Fanfani addressing rally in Italian and crowd listening (4 shots)
CU Communist flag ZOOM OUT TO GV crowd listening to Enrico Berlinquer, Secretary of Communist Party ZOOM IN TO SCU Berlinguer speaking from rostrum (2 shots)
GV Balloons ascending carrying "RAI TV" banner PULL BACK TO GV crowd listening
Initials BB/2020 EW/JB/BB/2005
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Background: Campaigning in Italy's nationwide regional and local elections ended on Friday (13 June) with two major rallies in the capital, Rome.
The rallies -- organised by main electoral opponents the Christian Democrats and the Communists -- attracted thousands of supporters and were addressed by rival campaign leaders, Amintore Fanfani, Secretary of the Christian Democrats, and his Communist counterpart, Signor Enrico Berlinguer.
Voting will take place in 15 of Italy's semi-autonomous regions on Sunday (15 June) and Monday. The results of the poll -- some expected late Monday night -- could well mark a turning point in Italy's post-war political history by bringing the main opposition party, the Communists, into national government for the first time, in what has been described as a "historic compromise" or coalition.
In the last regional elections, held in 1970, the Christian Democrats polled 10 per cent more votes than the Communists...but political observers have forecast that this year's result will be much closer. Voter apathy and discontent are expected to damage the Christian Democrat standing. The Party has held uninterrupted power for 30 year and has been blamed for much of Italy's uncertain economic position. At the same time, the Communists--and also the smaller Socialists--are hoping to capture a major part of the youth vote...for some 2.3 million youngsters aged between 18 and 21 will be voting for the first time in these crucial elections.