Rachele Mussolini, granddaughter of the Italian fascist leader Benito Mussolini, won the highest number of votes in Rome’s city council elections, official results showed Wednesday.
Standing for the Fratelli d’Italia party, which descends from the neo-fascist conservative MSI party– or Italian Social Movement party – Mussolini won 8,264 votes.
In an interview with newspaper La Repubblica on Wednesday, Mussolini said she believes voters were focused less on her surname and more on her “initiatives” during her service at the City Council.
“At school they used to point at me, but then Rachele emerged and the person [that I am] prevailed over the surname, however burdensome that name is,” she added.
Asked about her views on fascism, she told the Italian newspaper: “To deal with this subject, we’d need to talk until tomorrow morning.”
Rachele Mussolini is not the first descendant of the Italian dictator to go into politics. Her stepsister, Alessandra Mussolini, served as a member of parliament within Silvio Berlusconi’s centere-right wing alliance People of Freedom, and was also Member of the European Parliament.
Sharon Braithwaite reported from London and Nicola Ruotolo reported from Rome.