Italy's Lower House has passed a law that will make it increasingly difficult for anti-establishment party Five Star (M5S) to win in the country's next round of elections.
Lawmakers approved the legislation in a "secret vote" last Thursday. It passed with a large majority — 375 yes votes versus 215 no votes — with the ruling Democratic Party (PD) and opposition parties Forza Italia and Northern League collectively throwing their weight behind it.
The "Rosatellum" law introduces a system whereby 36 percent of the seats will be allocated via a "first-past-the-post" system and 64 percent proportionally. It also harmonizes the voting systems between the Lower and Upper Houses.
CitiGroup economist Giada Giani said the Rosatellum law "would favor mainstream parties against M5S, as they should be better in forging alliances and generally have stronger local MP candidates to win the first-past-the-post seats."
In an interview with CNBC last month, M5S leader Luigi di Maio ruled out the possibility of forming an alliance with other parties, saying: "We are happy to receive the support of other political parties, but we will not give them a representation in our government."