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Fascist dictator Benito Mussolini granddaughter tops Rome council

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The 47-year-old insisted that his surname had nothing to do with his popularity.

Rome:

Fascist dictator Benito Mussolini’s granddaughter Rachel Mussolini has emerged as the most popular candidate in Rome city hall elections, final results showed on Wednesday.

Mussolini garnered more than 8,200 preference votes after standing for the hard-right Brothers of Italy party, with more than 97 percent of the polling booths counting.

The 47-year-old, who is serving a second term as a city councillor, insisted that her surname had nothing to do with her popularity.

“The person is dominated by his surname, no matter how cumbersome it is,” he told La Repubblica newspaper, adding: “I have many left-wing friends.”

Mussolini’s late father, Romano, was a jazz pianist and the brother-in-law of actress Sophia Loren. He was the fourth child of Benito Mussolini.

Other descendants of the Italian dictator, including Rachele’s half-sister Alessandra, a former member of the European Parliament, have all gone into politics for the right.

Right-wing parties performed relatively poorly in local elections in Italy on Sunday and Monday, losing mayoral races in major cities such as Milan, Naples and Bologna.

In Rome, October 17-18 is due to be a run-off between right-wing candidate Enrico Michetti, a lawyer and radio host, and Roberto Gualtieri of the centre-left.

In the first round, Michetti won 30 percent versus 27 percent for Gualtieri, the former economy minister. Opinion polls show that Gualtieri is the favorite to win in two weeks’ time.

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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