Chances improve for Renzi's pick to become Italian president

January 31, 2015 12:10 PM

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Italian Premier Matteo Renzi forged ahead Friday with his candidate for president, even at the risk of losing broad support for his reform agenda, after initial rounds of balloting by lawmakers failed to yield a new head of state.

Chances of victory improve on Saturday for constitutional court justice Sergio Mattarella when the vote in Parliament needs only a simple majority, instead of the two-thirds threshold in balloting Thursday and Friday.

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