We are going to the polls on 26 October for a presidential election. There are 6 people to choose from!
Who Can Vote in the Presidental Election?
- An Irish citizen
- Aged 18 or over
- Ordinarily resident in the State* and
- Registered to vote
What Does the Irish President Do?
The Irish Constitution (Bunreacht na hÉireann) sets out a number of powers and functions for the President. Many of these powers can only be exercised on the advice of the Government. For example, the Government must approve all Presidential communications, messages or addresses, both to the Oireachtas (the Irish parliament) and to the public.
The President must also seek the advice of the Council of State when planning to exercise certain powers.
Who Are the Candidates?
The following information has been taken from www.independent.co.uk, we would advise every reader to make up their own mind about who should be the next president by reading as much literature on each candidate as they can.
- Michael D Higgins is a veteran Irish politician, originally a member of the Labour party, who is also well known as a poet. He has served as Irish president since 2011.
- Liadh Ní Riada is a Sinn Féin politician who has been a Member of the European Parliament since 2014. Sinn Féin are the only party officially contesting this election, as all others have declined to stand a candidate as a show of support for President Higgins.
- Sean Gallagher is a businessman and a former Dragon’s Den star who also ran in the 2011 presidential election. He secured his nomination with the support of councils.
- Joan Freeman is a psychologist who has also been an independent senator since 2016, and received her nomination through the support of councils. She is the founder of suicide intervention charity Pieta House, and launched the popular Darkness Into Light walk which raises funds for those affected by suicide.
- Gavin Duffy is a businessman and another former Dragon’s Den star who has received his nomination with council support.
The Most Important Thing
The most important thing is that you get out and vote. At the same time there is a referendum on blasphemy, you can read more about it here.