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From Academic Kids

The Tánaiste (plural: Tánaistithe), or more formally An Tánaiste, is the deputy prime minister of the Republic of Ireland1. The Tánaiste is appointed by the President of Ireland upon the nomination of the Taoiseach (prime minister). The word was historically an Irish word for the heir of a Celtic chieftain (see tanistry).

The Tánaiste acts in the place of the Taoiseach during his or her temporary absence, and, until a successor has been appointed, in the event of the Taoiseach's death or permanent incapacitation. The Tánaiste must be a minister, and is ex-officio a member of the Council of State.

The title is in practice largely honorific. Under a coalition Government the position is commonly held by the leader of the second-largest party and in this situation is free to head any department he or she wants. In a single-party government, the Tánaiste is often an 'elder statesman' holding one of the less important ministerial portfolios.

The office was created in the 1937 Constitution of Ireland, replacing the previous office of Vice-President of the Executive Council that had existed under the Constitution of the Irish Free State.

List of Tánaistithe

# Name Took Office Left Office Party
1.Seán T. O'Kelly December 29, 1937 June 14, 1945 Fianna Fáil
2.Sean Lemass June 19, 1945 February 18, 1948 Fianna Fáil
3.William Norton February 18, 1948 June 13, 1951 Labour
Sean Lemass (2nd time) June 13, 1951 June 2, 1954 Fianna Fáil
William Norton (2nd time) June 2, 1954 March 20, 1957 Labour
Sean Lemass (3rd time) March 20, 1957 June 23, 1959 Fianna Fáil
4.Seán MacEntee June 23, 1959 April 21, 1965 Fianna Fáil
5.Frank Aiken April 21, 1965 July 2, 1969 Fianna Fáil
6.Erskine Childers July 2, 1969 March 14, 1973 Fianna Fáil
7.Brendan Corish March 14, 1973 July 5, 1977 Labour
8.George Colley July 5, 1977 June 30, 1981 Fianna Fáil
9.Michael O'Leary June 30, 1981 March 9, 1982 Labour
10.Ray MacSharry March 9, 1982 December 14, 1982 Fianna Fáil
11.Dick Spring (1st time) December 14, 1982 January 20, 1987 Labour
12.Peter Barry January 20, 1987 March 10, 1987 Fine Gael
13.Brian Lenihan March 10, 1987 October 31, 1990 Fianna Fáil
14.John P. Wilson November 13, 1990 January 12, 1993 Fianna Fáil
Dick Spring (2nd time) January 12, 1993 November 17, 1994 Labour
15.Bertie Ahern November 19, 1994 December 15, 1994 Fianna Fáil
Dick Spring (3rd time) December 15, 1994 June 26, 1997 Labour
16.Mary Harney June 26, 1997 (Current incumbent) Progressive Democrats

Footnotes

1. Tánaiste is Irish. It may be pronounced "taw-nish-ta".

See also



Government of Ireland Government of Ireland
An Taoiseach (Prime Minister) | An Tánaiste (Deputy Prime Minister) edit  (http://academickids.com/encyclopedia/index.php?title=Template:GovernmentofIreland&action=edit)

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