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Northern Ireland

What are facts about Ireland's government?


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January 26, 2012 9:09PM

Government type: Republic, parliamentary democracy

-Capital: Dublin

-Geographic coordinates: 53 20 N, 6 15 W

-Ireland's administrative divisions coincide with the 26 counties; Carlow, Cavan, Clare, Cork, Donegal, Dublin, Galway, Kerry, Kildare, Kilkenny, Laois, Leitrim, Limerick, Longford, Louth, Mayo, Meath, Monaghan, Offaly, Roscommon, Sligo, Tipperary, Waterford, Westmeath, Wexford, Wicklow (Note: Cavan, Donegal, and Monaghan are part of the Ulster Province

-Irish Independence: Officially granted by treaty with the UK December 6, 1921

-Constitution: First adopted July 1st, 1937 by plebiscite. Went into effect December 29, 1937

-Legal System: Based on English common law, but has been modified by indigenous concepts. Irish supreme court has right to review all legislative acts

-Voting: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:

-Chief of state: President Mary Mcaleese (since 11 November 1997)

-Head of government ("Taoiseach," which literally translates into "chief"): Prime Minister Bertie Ahern (since June 1997)

-Cabinet: appointed by the president after nomination by the prime minister and approval of the House of Representatives

-President elected for a term of seven years by popular vote (eligible for a second term). Last election was held October 31st, 1997. Next election scheduled for October 2011. (note: Mary Mcaleese appointed to a second term when no other candidate qualified for the 2004 presidential election).

-Prime minister (Taoiseach) nominated by the House of Representatives and appointed by the president. The current government coalition includes Fianna Fail and the Progressive Democrats