And the Winner of Rome’s Local Elections Is… Mussolini’s Actual Granddaughter

Rachele Mussolini said her election win for the far-right Brothers of Italy has nothing to do with her surname, but was down to the initiatives she’s promoted.
Mussolini’s Granddaughter Wins Most Votes in Rome Election for Far-Right Party
Rachele Mussolini poses for a photo ahead of the municipal elections in Rome. Georgia Meloni is the leader of the Fratelli D'Italia party. Photo: Stefano Montesi - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images

The granddaughter of Italian dictator Benito Mussolini has won the most votes in municipal elections in Rome. 

Rachele Mussolini, who shares her name with the fascist leader’s second wife, is a member of the Fratelli D’Italia or Brothers of Italy, a far-right and Eurosceptic party founded in 2012. 

While this will be Mussolini’s second term as city councillor, her popularity has grown – from winning just 657 votes in 2016, to over 8,200 this week. Her results were the highest individual vote in the city. 

Advertisement

She has insisted that her surname had nothing to do with her win, telling the Italian newspaper La Repubblica: “The person is more important than the surname, however heavy it may be.” 

She added: “During my last term, they started asking about the initiatives I promoted on the city council. I’ve worked hard.”

Her half-sister, Alessandra, is a former politician. She served as a member of the European Parliament between 2014 and 2019 for the party Forza Italia, of which former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is president.

Across Italy’s local elections, traditional right and far-right parties have performed relatively poorly, losing mayoral races in key cities such as Milan, Naples, and Bologna.

But support for Fratelli D’Italia has been rising steadily over recent years. According to a survey on Wednesday, the party was the second most popular in Italy.