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President of the
Portuguese Republic
Flag President of Portugal.svg
Presidential Flag
Incumbent
Aníbal António Cavaco Silva

since March 9, 2006
Style His/Her Excellency
Residence Belém Palace
Term length Five years, renewable once; may run for third and final non-consecutive term.
Inaugural holder Teófilo Braga
Formation October 5, 1910
Website http://www.presidencia.pt/
Portugal

This article is part of the series:
Politics and government of
Portugal



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Portugal has been a republic since 1910, and since that time the head of state has been the president, whose official title is President of the Portuguese Republic (Presidente da República Portuguesa, Portuguese pronunciation: [pɾɨziˈdẽtɨ dɐ ʁɛˈpublikɐ]).

Under the Portuguese Constitution adopted in 1976, in the wake of the 1974 Carnation Revolution, the President is elected to a five-year term, and may serve for a maximum of two consecutive terms. A president who serves two consecutive terms may run for a third and final non-consecutive term. The official residence of the Portuguese President is the Belém Palace.

The President theoretically has wide powers, but most are rarely used, following the precedent set by President António Ramalho Eanes (1976-1986) and upheld by his successors Mário Soares and Jorge Sampaio.

The President, however, has the discretionary power to dissolve Parliament when s/he sees fit, 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 MPs supporting the government.

The President is elected, as in France, 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 Revolution have served for two consecutive terms, and presidents consistently rank as the most popular political figure in the country.

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.

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 Prime Minister António de Oliveira Salazar).

Latest election

e • d 
Portuguese Presidential Election, 2006 - First Round (January 22)
Candidates Supporting parties Votes %
Aníbal Cavaco Silva PSD, CDS/PP 2,773,431 50.54
Manuel Alegre Independent 1,138,297 20.74
Mário Soares PS 785,355 14.31
Jerónimo de Sousa PCP, PEV 474,083 8.64
Francisco Louçã BE 292,198 5.32
António Garcia Pereira PCTP/MRPP 23,983 0.44
Blank Ballots 59,636
Invalid Ballots 43,149
Total
5,590,132 100.00
  • Registered Voters: 9,085,339
  • Turnout: 61.53%

See also

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