President of Portugal

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President of the Portuguese Republic
Presidente da República Portuguesa
Coat of arms of Portugal.svg
Flag of the President of Portugal.svg
Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, Visita de Estado ao Mexico 2017-07-17.png
Incumbent
Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa

since 9 March 2016 (2016-03-09)
Style His/Her Excellency [1]
Type Executive
Member of Council of State
Council of Ministers
Residence Belém Palace
Seat Lisbon, Portugal
Appointer Direct election;
Two-round system, universal suffrage
Term length Five years;
Renewable once, consecutively.
Constituting instrument Constitution of the
Third Republic
Precursor King of Portugal
Formation5 October 1910;108 years ago (1910-10-05)
First holder Manuel de Arriaga
Salary 93,364.74 (2015)
(€6,668.91/month) [2]
Website presidencia.pt
Coat of arms of Portugal.svg
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Portugal
Constitution
Foreign relations

The President of the Portuguese Republic (Portuguese : Presidente da República Portuguesa, pronounced  [pɾɨziˈðẽtɨ ðɐ ʁɛˈpuβlikɐ puɾtuˈɡezɐ] ) is the executive head of state of Portugal. The powers, functions and duties of prior presidential offices, and their relation with the Prime Minister and cabinets have over time differed with the various Portuguese constitutions.

Portuguese language Romance language that originated in Portugal

Portuguese is a Western Romance language originating in the Iberian Peninsula. It is the sole official language of Portugal, Brazil, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, Angola, and São Tomé and Príncipe. It also has co-official language status in East Timor, Equatorial Guinea and Macau in China. As the result of expansion during colonial times, a cultural presence of Portuguese and Portuguese creole speakers are also found in Goa, Daman and Diu in India; in Batticaloa on the east coast of Sri Lanka; in the Indonesian island of Flores; in the Malacca state of Malaysia; and the ABC islands in the Caribbean where Papiamento is spoken, while Cape Verdean Creole is the most widely spoken Portuguese-based Creole. Reintegrationists maintain that Galician is not a separate language, but a dialect of Portuguese. A Portuguese-speaking person or nation is referred to as "Lusophone" (Lusófono).

The executive is the organ exercising authority in and holding responsibility for the governance of a state. The executive executes and enforces law.

A head of state is the public persona who officially represents the national unity and legitimacy of a sovereign state. Depending on the country's form of government and separation of powers, the head of state may be a ceremonial figurehead or concurrently the head of government. In a parliamentary system the head of state is the de jure leader of the nation, and there is a separate de facto leader, often with the title of prime minister. In contrast, a semi-presidential system has both heads of state and government as the leaders de facto of the nation.

Contents

The current President of Portugal is Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, who took office on 9 March 2016.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa President of Portugal

Marcelo Nuno Duarte Rebelo de Sousa, ComSE, GCIH is a Portuguese academic, journalist, and politician, currently serving as the 20th and current President of Portugal, since 9 March 2016. A member of the Social Democratic Party (PSD), Rebelo de Sousa has served as a government minister, parliamentarian in the Assembly of the Portuguese Republic, legal scholar, journalist, political analyst and pundit, gaining him nationwide recognition prior to his election.

Role

The Portuguese Third Republic is a semi-presidential system. Unlike several other European presidents, the Portuguese President is quite powerful. Although it is the Prime Minister of Portugal and parliament that oversee much of the nation's actual day-to-day affairs, the Portuguese President wields significant influence and authority, especially in the fields of national security and foreign policy (but less than other "strong" semi-presidential systems, such as France or Romania). The President is the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, holds the nation's most senior office, and outranks all other politicians.

Semi-presidential system system of government

A semi-presidential system or dual executive system is a system of government in which a president exists alongside a prime minister and a cabinet, with the latter being responsible to the legislature of a state. It differs from a parliamentary republic in that it has a popularly elected head of state, who is more than a mostly ceremonial/non-executive, figurehead, and from the presidential system in that the cabinet, although named by the president, is responsible to the legislature, which may force the cabinet to resign through a motion of no confidence.

Prime Minister of Portugal

Prime Minister is the current title of the head of government of Portugal. As head of government, the Prime Minister coordinates the actions of ministers, represents the Government of Portugal to the other bodies of state, is accountable to Parliament and keeps the President informed. The Prime Minister can hold the role of head of government with the portfolio of one or more ministries.

Assembly of the Republic (Portugal) Portuguese parliament

The Assembly of the Republic is the parliament of the Portuguese Republic. According to the Portuguese Constitution, the unicameral parliament "is the representative assembly of all Portuguese citizens." The constitution names the assembly as one of the country's organs of supreme authority.

The President's greatest power is their ability to choose the Prime Minister. However, since the Assembly of the Republic has the sole power to dismiss the Prime Minister's government, the Prime Minister named by the President must have the confidence of the majority of the representatives in the assembly, otherwise he or she may face a motion of no confidence. The President has the discretionary power to dissolve parliament when sees it fit (colloquially known as the "atomic bomb" in Portugal), and President Sampaio made use of this prerogative in late 2004 to remove the controversial government of Pedro Santana Lopes, despite the absolute majority of deputies supporting the government. In 2003 President Sampaio also intervened to limit the Portuguese participation in the Iraq War - as Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces he forbade the deployment of the Portuguese Army in a war that he personally disagreed with, clashing with the then Prime-Minister José Manuel Barroso (128 National Republican Guards were eventually deployed from 2003 to 2005).

A motion of no-confidence, alternatively vote of no confidence, or (unsuccessful) confidence motion, is a statement or vote which states that a person in a position of responsibility is no longer deemed fit to hold that position, perhaps because they are inadequate in some respect, are failing to carry out obligations, or are making decisions that other members feel detrimental. As a parliamentary motion, it demonstrates to the head of state that the elected parliament no longer has confidence in the appointed government. If a no confidence motion is passed against an individual minister they have to give their resignation along with the entire council of ministers.

Jorge Sampaio President of Portugal

Jorge Fernando Branco de Sampaio, GColTE, GCIH, GColL is a Portuguese lawyer and politician who was the 18th President of Portugal from 1996 to 2006.

Pedro Santana Lopes Portuguese politician

Pedro Miguel de Santana Lopes GCC, a Portuguese lawyer and politician, who most notably served as Prime Minister of Portugal from 2004 to 2005.

Prior to the Carnation Revolution, the powers of the presidency varied widely; some presidents were virtual dictators (such as Pais, and Carmona in his early years), while others were little more than figureheads (such as Carmona in his later years, Craveiro Lopes, and Américo Thomaz; during their administrations, supreme power was held by President of the Council of Ministers António de Oliveira Salazar).

Sidónio Pais assassinated Portuguese president

Sidónio Bernardino Cardoso da Silva PaisCavC OA CavA was a Portuguese politician, military officer, and diplomat, who served as the fourth President of the First Portuguese Republic in 1918. One of the most divisive figures in modern Portuguese history, he was referred to by the writer Fernando Pessoa as the "President-King", a description that stuck in later years and symbolizes his regime.

Figurehead person who holds de jure an important title or office, yet de facto executes little actual power

In politics, a figurehead is a person who de jure holds an important and often supremely powerful title or office, yet de facto exercises little to no actual power. This usually means that they are head of state, but not head of government. The metaphor derives from the carved figurehead at the prow of a sailing ship.

Francisco Craveiro Lopes President of Portugal

Francisco Higino Craveiro Lopes, GCTE, ComC, GCA, was a Portuguese politician and military man. Decorated with the Order of the Bath and the Royal Victorian Chain, he was the 12th President of the Portuguese Republic between 1951 and 1958.

Powers

The constitution grants the following powers to the president: [3]

Election

Under the Portuguese Constitution adopted in 1976, in the wake of the 1974 Carnation Revolution, the President is elected to a five-year term; there is no limit to the number of terms a president may serve, but a president who serves two consecutive terms may not serve again in the next five years after the second term finishes or in the following five years after his resignation. [3] The official residence of the Portuguese President is the Belém Palace.

The President is elected in a two-round system: if no candidate reaches 50% of the votes during the first round, the two candidates with the most votes face each other in a second round held two weeks later. However, the second round has only been needed once, during the 1986 presidential election. To date, all of the elected presidents since the Carnation Revolution have served for two consecutive terms, and presidents consistently rank as the most popular political figure in the country. Recently, however, the popularity of former President Cavaco Silva plummeted, making him the second-least popular political figure in the country, just above the Prime Minister, and the first Portuguese President after 1974 to have a negative popularity. [4]

If the president dies or becomes incapacitated while in office, the President of the Assembly assumes the office with restricted powers until a new president can be inaugurated following fresh elections.

2016 presidential election

Summary of the 24 January 2016 Portuguese presidential election results

e    d  
CandidatesSupporting partiesFirst round
Votes%
Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa Social Democratic Party, People's Party, People's Monarchist Party 2,413,95652.00
António Sampaio da Nóvoa Independent supported by the Portuguese Workers' Communist Party, LIVRE 1,062,13822.88
Marisa Matias Left Bloc, Socialist Alternative Movement 469,81410.12
Maria de Belém Independent 196,7654.24
Edgar Silva Portuguese Communist Party, Ecologist Party "The Greens" 183,0513.94
Vitorino Silva Independent 152,3743.28
Paulo de Morais Independent 100,1912.16
Henrique Neto Independent 39,1630.84
Jorge Sequeira Independent 13,9540.30
Cândido Ferreira Independent 10,6090.23
Total valid4,642,015100.00
Blank ballots58,9641.24
Invalid ballots43,5880.92
Total (turnout 48.66%)4,744,597
Source: Comissão Nacional de Eleições

Graphical timeline (since 1910)

President of Portugal

State visits

The President of Portugal often makes official state visits to other foreign countries.

Living former Presidents

There are three living former Portuguese Presidents:

See also

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References

  1. "United Nations Protocol and Liaison Service Public List: Heads of State - Heads of Government - Ministers For Foreign Affairs". Retrieved 14 October 2016.
  2. Miguel Santos (23 September 2015). "E agora um tema sensível: os políticos são mal pagos?". Observador (in Portuguese). Lisbon. Retrieved 12 October 2016. Todos os salários de detentores de cargos políticos são calculados em função do salário bruto do Presidente da República — 6 668 euros brutos (a que acresce 25% de despesas de representação).
  3. 1 2 "Constitution of the Portuguese Republic" (PDF). Assembly of the Republic. 2005. Retrieved 6 June 2014.
  4. Francisco Teixeira (21 April 2011). "Cavaco é o primeiro PR com popularidade negativa". Diário Econónmico (in Portuguese). Lisbon. Retrieved 16 October 2016.