Ignazio La Russa

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Ignazio La Russa
Ignazio La Russa datisenato 2018.jpg
Vice President of the
Senate of the Republic
Assumed office
28 March 2018
PresidentElisabetta Casellati
Minister of Defence
In office
8 May 2008 – 16 November 2011
Prime MinisterSilvio Berlusconi
Preceded byArturo Parisi
Succeeded byGiampaolo Di Paola
President of Brothers of Italy
In office
4 April 2013 – 8 March 2014
Preceded byGuido Crosetto
Succeeded byGiorgia Meloni
Member of the Chamber of Deputies
In office
23 April 1992 – 22 March 2018
Personal details
Born (1947-07-18) 18 July 1947 (age 72)
Paternò, Italy
Political partyBrothers of Italy
Other political
Italian Social Movement
National Alliance
The People of Freedom
Spouse(s)Laura De Cicco
Alma materUniversity of Pavia
Ignazio La Russa
Ignazio Benito Maria La Russa

(1947-07-18) 18 July 1947 (age 72)
Height1.72 m (5 ft 8 in)

Ignazio Benito Maria La Russa (born 18 July 1947 in Paternò, Catania, Sicily) is an Italian politician. He was Minister of Defence in the fourth cabinet of Silvio Berlusconi.[1] He is the Vice President of the Senate of the Republic in the XVIII Legislature (2018–today).

On 11 May 2008, he became acting president of Gianfranco Fini's National Alliance (AN), which, on 29 March 2009, merged into Silvio Berlusconi's party The People of Freedom (PdL). He was one of the three (with Sandro Bondi and Denis Verdini, two former member of the historical FI) national coordinators of the PdL until 17 December 2012 when he launched his own National Centre-right (CN) party that in the 2013 general elections joined Brothers of Italy (FdI) of Giorgia Meloni (former member of MSI-AN-PdL) and Guido Crosetto (former member of DC-FI-PdL). From 4 April 2013 to 8 March 2014 La Russa was the President of Brothers of Italy (FdI).


Personal life and professional career[edit]

When he was 13, his family moved to Milan, where his father Antonino La Russa was a practising lawyer. After attending college in the German-speaking Swiss canton of St. Gallen, he obtained a degree in Law at the University of Pavia. After serving as a Regular Army Reserve Officer, he has worked as a criminal defence lawyer at the Court of Cassation. He is married and has three sons, Geronimo, Lorenzo and Leonardo.

Political and governative career[edit]

He has shown an interest in politics since his student years, and was involved in far-right activism in Milan. In 1985, he was elected as Regional Councillor for the Lombardy Region, for the Italian party Movimento Sociale Italiano (MSI), and he was re-elected in 1990. In 1992, he was elected Member of Parliament (MP) to both the Senate of the Republic and the Chamber of Deputies (a law of the time allowed a candidate to run for election as representative for both the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies: if the candidate obtained sufficient votes to be elected to both, he had to opt for one of the Houses; this law has been modified some years after 1992 election: now candidates before the election have to choose the House they will run for in advance), and Daniela Santanché became one of his assistants. On 29 June 1993, the President of the conservative National Alliance (AN), Gianfranco Fini appointed him as First Vice-President of National Alliance (AN is the successor of the MSI). On 27 March 1994, he was re-elected MP and appointed Deputy Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies. In 1996, he was appointed Chairman of the "Committee on Parliamentary Immunity" of the Chamber of Deputies, an office he held for the entire 13th Parliament (1996-2001). On 5 June 2001, he was elected Chairman of the Deputies of National Alliance Parliamentary Group at the Chamber of Deputies. Between November 2004 and July 2005 he was again Chairman of the Deputies of National Alliance. He held this office also during the following Parliament (15th, 2006-2008), as he was re-elected MP in the ‘Lombardy 1’ constituency. Throughout the last years, thanks to his professional background, he acted as spokesman for the Right on justice-related subjects. Also of note is his commitment with respect to other significant issues, namely security of citizens, immigration, reduction of the tax burden, safeguarding national identity, and the liberal professions. On 8 May 2008, he was appointed Minister of Defence, office he held until 16 November 2011. On 21 December 2012, La Russa with Guido Crosetto and Giorgia Meloni founded Brothers of Italy, a national conservative party[2] split from the PdL. On 4 April 2013, La Russa was appointed President of Brothers of Italy (FdI).[3] On 8 March 2014 he was replaced by Giorgia Meloni. Elected in Senate with the 2018 election, La Russa became Vice President of the Senate in the 18th Parliament started on 23 March 2018.


Party political offices
Preceded by
Gustavo Selva
Leader of the National Alliance
in the Chamber of Deputies

Succeeded by
Gian Franco Anedda
Preceded by
Gian Franco Anedda
Leader of the National Alliance
in the Chamber of Deputies

Succeeded by
Fabrizio Cicchitto
as Leader of the People of Freedom
in the Chamber of Deputies
Preceded by
Gianfranco Fini
President of National Alliance

Succeeded by
Silvio Berlusconi
as President of the
People of Freedom
Preceded by
Guido Crosetto
President of Brothers of Italy
4 April 2013 – 8 March 2014
Succeeded by
Giorgia Meloni
Political offices
Preceded by
Arturo Parisi
Minister of Defence
Succeeded by
Giampaolo Di Paola