Italy pols bicker over failed bid to improve voting system

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The leaders of Italy's two biggest political parties are trading blame for the latest failed attempt in Parliament to overhaul the country's electoral system to yield more stable, effective governments.

Former Premier Matteo Renzi on Friday contended that his Democratic Party's chief rival, the opposition populist 5-Star Movement, proved itself "unreliable for definition" when 5-Star lawmakers on Thursday apparently broke their promise to support the Democrats-backed electoral reform bill.

Five-Star leader Beppe Grillo blamed the Democrats for the reform bill's demise. The comic sarcastically advised Renzi to cut a deal instead with center-right lawmakers loyal to ex-Premier Silvio Berlusconi as well as with the media mogul's girlfriend's dog, Dudu.

Renzi, while eager for elections ahead of their 2018 due date, pledged to keep supporting Premier Paolo Gentiloni's center-left coalition government.