|President of the Chamber of Deputies|
20 June 1979 – 22 April 1992
|Preceded by||Pietro Ingrao|
|Succeeded by||Oscar Luigi Scalfaro|
|Born||10 April 1920
Reggio Emilia, Italy
|Died||4 December 1999
|Political party||PCI (1943-1991)
|Domestic partner||Palmiro Togliatti|
Leonilde Iotti, commonly known as Nilde Iotti (10 April 1920 - 4 December 1999) was an Italian politician of the Communist Party, the first woman to become president of the Italian Chamber of Deputies for three consecutive legislatures from 1979 to 1992.
Born in Reggio Emilia, she took part in the resistance movement against the Nazi German invaders during World War II. After the end of the war and the referendum against the Savoy Monarchy, in 1946, she was member of the Constituent Chamber, and one of the 75 members of the Committee entrusted with the drafting of the Italian Republican Constitution (see: Birth of the Italian Republic).
In April 1948 Iotti was elected on the ticket of the Italian Communist Party (PCI) to the Chamber of Deputies, of which she was member without interruption until 1999. Iotti had a long liaison with the National Secretary of the PCI Palmiro Togliatti, one which lasted until the latter's death in 1964: the relationship was made public in 1948, on the occasion of the attempt on Togliatti's life, a few days after the Italian general election day, and was received coldly by Italy's public opinion, including many Italian communists, because Togliatti was married to Rita Montagnana at the time.
In 1979, Iotti became Speaker of the Lower House of Parliament, succeeding to Pietro Ingrao. She was popular and respected as a president, and was confirmed in the office for two more legislatures. In 1987, she was entrusted by President Francesco Cossiga with a mandate of potentially forming the government, the closest a PCI member, and a woman, got to becoming Prime Minister of Italy; however, Iotti was not able to form a coalition.
She was an atheist.
|President of the Italian Chamber of Deputies
Oscar Luigi Scalfaro