The PD have dropped more than three percentage points in a month, as former Prime Minister Matteo Renzi attempts to reassert his authority following a walkout by a left wing faction, Reutersreports.
The breakaway faction, backed by former Prime Minister Massimo D’Alema, has created an entirely new party called the Democratic and Progressive Movement (MDP), which has the backing of 3.3 per cent of voters in the recent Ipsos poll.
The PD and MDP parties – along with a tiny centre right group polling at just 2.8 per cent – are the only openly pro-European Union (EU) parties in Italy.
Eurosceptics, therefore, could be in the driving seat after the next election. Despite this, the 5-Star Movement has said that they will not form a coalition with any other party, lessening the chances that they will form a government.
With general elections due this autumn or next year, the movement is said to be picking potential ministers from its MPs, with Luigi Di Maio, 30, tipped as their candidate for prime minister.