List of Presidents of the French Senate: Wikis


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The French Senate is the Upper House of the French Parliament. It is presided over by a President. Although there had been Senates in both the First and Second Empires, these had not technically been legislative bodies, but rather advisory bodies on the model of the Roman Senate. France's first experience with an upper house was under the Directory from 1795 to 1799, when the Council of Ancients was the upper chamber. With the Restoration in 1814, a new Chamber of Peers was created, on the model of the British House of Lords. At first it contained hereditary peers, but following the July Revolution of 1830, it became a body to which one was appointed for life. The Second Republic returned to a unicameral system after 1848, but soon after the establishment of the Second French Empire in 1852, a Senate was established as the upper chamber. In the Fourth Republic, the Senate was renamed the Council of the Republic, but its function was largely the same. With the new constitution of the Fifth Republic in 1959, the older name of Senate was restored.

The President of the Senate, in addition to his duties as presiding officer of the Upper House of parliament, is also, according to the constitution of the Fifth Republic, first in line of succession in case of death or resignation of the president, thus becoming Acting President of the Republic until a new election can be held. This has already occurred twice. Alain Poher, the President of the French Senate, served as Acting President of France from 28 April till 20 June 1969 (between the resignation of President Charles de Gaulle and the installation of his elected successor President Georges Pompidou) and again from 3 April till 27 May 1974 (between the death of President Georges Pompidou and the installation of his elected successor President Valéry Giscard d'Estaing).


Presidents of the Chamber of Peers, 1814-1848

President Began Ended
Charles-Henri, chevalier Dambray 4 June 1814 20 March 1815
Jean-Jacques-Regis de Cambaceres 2 June 1815 7 July 1815
Charles-Henri, chevalier Dambray 12 October 1815 12 December 1829
Claude-Emmanuel, marquis de Pastoret 17 December 1829 3 August 1830
Etienne-Denis, baron Pasquier (from 14 December 1849, Etienne-Denis, duc Pasquier) 3 August 1830 24 February 1848

Presidents of the Senate, 1852-1940

President Began Ended Party
Jérôme Bonaparte 28 January 1852 30 November 1852 Bonapartist
Raymond-Theodore Troplong 30 December 1852 1 March 1869 Bonapartist
Adrien Marie Devienne 3 March 1869 20 July 1869 Bonapartist
Eugene Rouher 20 July 1869 4 September 1870 Bonapartist
No Senate 1870 1876
Edmé-Armand-Gaston, Duc d'Audiffret-Pasquier 13 March 1876 15 January 1879 Conservative
Louis Martel 15 January 1879 25 May 1880 Conservative
Léon Say 25 May 1880 2 February 1882 Republican
Philippe Le Royer 2 February 1882 24 February 1893 Republican
Jules Ferry 24 February 1893 17 March 1893 Left Republican
Paul-Armand Challemel-Lacour 27 March 1893 16 January 1896 Opportunist Republican
Émile Loubet 16 January 1896 18 February 1899 Left Republican
Armand Fallières 3 March 1899 17 January 1906 Democratic Republican Alliance
Antonin Dubost 16 February 1906 14 January 1920 Democratic Republican Alliance
Léon Bourgeois 14 January 1920 22 February 1923 Radical
Gaston Doumergue 22 February 1923 13 June 1924 Radical
Justin de Selves 19 June 1924 9 January 1927 Radical
Paul Doumer 14 January 1927 13 May 1931 Radical
Albert Lebrun 11 June 1931 10 May 1932 Democratic Alliance
Jules Jeanneney 3 June 1932 9 July 1940 Radical

Presidents of the Council of the Republic, 1946-1958

President Began Ended Party
Auguste Champetier de Ribes 27 December 1946 6 March 1947 MRP
Gaston Monnerville 18 March 1947 4 October 1958 Radical

Presidents of the Senate, 1958-present

President Began Ended Party
Gaston Monnerville 4 October 1958 2 October 1968 Radical
Alain Poher 2 October 1968 2 October 1992 UDF-CDS
René Monory 2 October 1992 1 October 1998 UDF-CDS
Christian Poncelet 1 October 1998 1 October 2008 UMP
Gérard Larcher 1 October 2008 present UMP


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