Elly Schlein of the left-wing Possibile party told DW it was actually Prime Minister Renzi who had led a populist campaign by saying Italy needed to reduce the cost of politics. "Fortunately, people didn't buy it and understood the risk," she said.
In the wake of far-right activity in northern Italy, the country's ruling Democrats have led a rally in Como to warn about the dangers of fascism. The Italian Constitution bans the return of fascist organizations.
Voters in Lombardy and Veneto have overwhelmingly supported nonbinding referendums seeking greater autonomy. Italy's wealthy north has long called for greater control over finances and security.
The Italian Prime Minister has resigned but has been asked to serve as a caretaker until a new government is in place. The resignation follows Renzi's resounding defeat in a referendum on constitutional reforms.
Former Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has been re-elected as leader of the ruling Democratic Party (PD). Renzi's win was announced well ahead of the end of counting, as his rivals fell far behind.
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