Europe

Mayoral runoffs in Italian cities test Renzi's Democrats

  • Anti-establishment 5-Star Movement (M5S) candidate as Rome's mayor Virginia Raggi poses for photographers as she casts her ballot in polling station in Rome, Sunday, June 19, 2016. Mayoral runoffs are held in Rome, Milan and other big Italian cities Sunday. If Raggi wins, she'll be the first woman to serve as Rome mayor. (AP Photo/Fabio Frustaci)

    Anti-establishment 5-Star Movement (M5S) candidate as Rome's mayor Virginia Raggi poses for photographers as she casts her ballot in polling station in Rome, Sunday, June 19, 2016. Mayoral runoffs are held in Rome, Milan and other big Italian cities Sunday. If Raggi wins, she'll be the first woman to serve as Rome mayor. (AP Photo/Fabio Frustaci)  (The Associated Press)

  • Roberto Giachetti, the Democratic Party candidate as Rome's Mayor casts his ballot in a polling station in downtown Rome, Sunday June 19, 2016. Mayoral runoffs in Rome, Milan and other big Italian cities Sunday were being watched to see how Premier Matteo Renzi's often bickering Democratic Party fares, especially in the capital, where City Hall corruption scandals tainted traditional parties on both the left and the right. (Claudio Peri/Ansa via AP)

    Roberto Giachetti, the Democratic Party candidate as Rome's Mayor casts his ballot in a polling station in downtown Rome, Sunday June 19, 2016. Mayoral runoffs in Rome, Milan and other big Italian cities Sunday were being watched to see how Premier Matteo Renzi's often bickering Democratic Party fares, especially in the capital, where City Hall corruption scandals tainted traditional parties on both the left and the right. (Claudio Peri/Ansa via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • Anti-establishment 5-Star Movement (M5S) candidate as Rome's mayor Virginia Raggi poses for photographers as she casts her ballot in polling station in Rome, Sunday, June 19, 2016. Mayoral runoffs are held in Rome, Milan and other big Italian cities Sunday. If Raggi wins, she'll be the first woman to serve as Rome mayor. (AP Photo/Fabio Frustaci)

    Anti-establishment 5-Star Movement (M5S) candidate as Rome's mayor Virginia Raggi poses for photographers as she casts her ballot in polling station in Rome, Sunday, June 19, 2016. Mayoral runoffs are held in Rome, Milan and other big Italian cities Sunday. If Raggi wins, she'll be the first woman to serve as Rome mayor. (AP Photo/Fabio Frustaci)  (The Associated Press)

Mayoral runoffs in Rome, Milan and other big Italian cities are being watched to see how Premier Matteo Renzi's often bickering Democratic Party fares.

The contenders Sunday in the Italian capital are Renzi-backed Roberto Giachetti and the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement's candidate, Virginia Raggi, who could become Rome's first woman mayor.

Corruption scandals have tainted local politicians from both left-leaning and right-wing forces in Rome.

Sports fans will be watching the vote, since Raggi opposes Italy's bid for the 2024 Olympics.

In Milan, Renzi's candidate is Giuseppe Sala, who successfully managed the recent Expo there. Challenging him is Stefano Parisi, a respected manager backed by the center-right.

Naples, Turin and Bologna also have runoffs.

Renzi heads the Democrats, whose unity has been eroded by some who chafe at his take-charge style.