She joined the resistance movement in 1944, aged 17, after having witnessed the hanging of a group of young partisans by the nazi-fascists. She was part of the Cesare Battisti brigade, and that year also joined the Christian Democracy. After the World War II, she acted in Christian trade unions, was vice-president of the European Female Union and in charge of Christian Democracy youth. From 1968 to 1987 she was Member of the Italian Chamber of Deputies, re-elected for five time in the Venice-Treviso district. She served three times as undersecretary to the Department of Work and in 1976 she became the first female to be member of an Italian cabinet, being chosen by Giulio Andreotti as Minister for Labour. Successively she also had a couple experiences as Minister for Health.
Tina Anselmi is best known in Italy, however, for having been the main proposer of the Italian law on equal opportunities, a matter she always fought for in her political life. In 1981, she headed the Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry on the P2 Masonic Lodge (Commissione parlamentare d’inchiesta sulla Loggia massonica P2), and wrote the final majority report that was approved in 1984.