Politics of Greece
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politics and government of
The politics of Greece takes place in a
The President of the Republic is elected by the Parliament for a five-year term (election last held 13 March 2015), and a maximum of two terms in office. When a presidential term expires, Parliament votes to elect the new President. In the first two votes, a 2⁄3 majority (200 votes) is necessary. The third and final vote requires a 3⁄5 (180 votes) majority.
If the third vote is fruitless, Parliament is dissolved and elections are proclaimed by the outgoing President within the next 30 days. In the new Parliament, the election for President is repeated immediately with a 3/5 majority required for the initial vote, an absolute majority for the second one (151 votes) and a simple majority for the third and final one. The system is so designed as to promote consensus presidential candidates among the main political parties.
The president has the power to
The president can also exercise certain emergency powers, which must be countersigned by the appropriate cabinet minister. The president may not dissolve parliament, dismiss the government, suspend certain articles of the constitution, issue a proclamation or declare a state of siege without countersigning by the prime minister or the appropriate cabinet minister. To call a referendum, he must obtain approval from parliament.
The prime minister is elected by the Parliament and he or she is usually the leader of the party controlling the absolute majority of MPs. According to the Constitution, the prime minister safeguards the unity of the government and directs its activities. He or she is the most powerful person of the Greek political system and recommends ministers to the President for appointment or dismissal.
Greek parliamentary politics hinge upon the principle of the "δεδηλωμένη" (pronounced "dhedhilomeni"), the "declared confidence" of Parliament to the Prime Minister and his/her administration. This means that the President of the Republic is bound to appoint, as Prime Minister, a person who will be approved by a majority of the Parliament's members (i.e. 151 votes). With the current electoral system, it is the leader of the party gaining a plurality of the votes in the Parliamentary elections who gets appointed Prime Minister.
An administration may at any time seek a "vote of confidence". Conversely a number of Members of Parliament may ask that a "vote of reproach" be taken. Both are rare occurrences with usually predictable outcomes as voting outside the party line happens very seldom.
On 4 October 2009,