Meloni’s Brothers of Italy got here prime in Sunday’s elections, in accordance with the primary exit polls, whereas her right-wing coalition regarded set to safe a majority in each homes of parliament.
Typically intense and combative as she rails towards the European Union, mass immigration and “LGBT lobbies”, the 45-year-old has swept up disaffected voters and constructed a strong private model.
“I’m Giorgia, I’m a lady, I’m a mom, I’m Italian, I’m Christian,” she declared at a 2019 rally in Rome, which went viral after it was remixed right into a dance music observe.
Brothers of Italy grew in a foreign country’s post-fascist motion, however Meloni has sought to distance herself from the previous, whereas refusing to resign it fully.
She advocates conventional Catholic household values however says she is going to preserve Italy’s abortion regulation, which permits terminations however permits docs to refuse to hold them out.
Nonetheless, she says she needs to “give to ladies who assume abortion is their solely alternative the precise to make a special alternative”.
Born in Rome on January 15, 1977, Meloni was introduced up within the working-class neighbourhood of Garbatella by her mom, after her father left them.
She has lengthy been concerned in politics — turning into the youngest minister in post-war Italian historical past at 31 — and co-founded Brothers of Italy in 2012.
Within the 2018 common elections, her get together secured simply 4 % of the vote, in comparison with a projected 22-26 % in Sunday’s vote.
That put Meloni forward of not simply her rivals but additionally her coalition allies, Matteo Salvini’s anti-immigration League and Forza Italia’s Silvio Berlusconi, in whose authorities she served in 2008.
Meloni has benefited from being the one get together in opposition for the previous 18 months, after selecting to remain out of outgoing Prime Minister Mario Draghi’s nationwide unity authorities.
On the identical time she has sought to reassure those that query her lack of expertise, together with her slogan “Prepared” adorning billboards up and down the nation.
Cautious of Italy’s large debt, she has emphasised fiscal prudence, regardless of her coalition’s name for tax cuts and better social spending.
Her stance on Europe has moderated through the years — she now not needs Italy to go away the EU’s single foreign money, and has strongly backed the bloc’s sanctions towards Russia over the Ukraine battle.
Nonetheless, she says Rome should arise extra for its nationwide pursuits and has backed Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban in his battles with Brussels.
Meloni was a teenage activist with the youth wing of the Italian Social Motion (MSI), fashioned by supporters of fascist dictator Benito Mussolini after World Conflict II.
At 19, campaigning for the far-right Nationwide Alliance, she instructed French tv that “Mussolini was a great politician, in that every part he did, he did for Italy”.
After being elected an MP for Nationwide Alliance in 2006, she shifted her tone, saying the dictator had made “errors”, notably the racial legal guidelines, his authoritarianism and coming into World Conflict II on the facet of Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Germany.
Her get together takes its identify from the primary line of Italy’s nationwide anthem and its emblem consists of the identical flame utilized by MSI, within the inexperienced, white and pink of the nation’s flag.
She has refused calls to vary the emblem, insisting the flame has “nothing to do with fascism” — and blaming discuss on the contrary on “the left”.
“The Italian proper has handed fascism over to historical past for many years now,” she mentioned in a trilingual video message despatched to international correspondents final month.
She insists that inside her get together “there is no such thing as a room for nostalgic attitudes”.
Meloni has a daughter, born in 2006, together with her TV journalist associate.