Would A Gay Irish President Legalize Gay Marriage, Adoptions, And Blood Donations?

Openly gay Irish Senator David Norris was the favorite in Ireland’s presidential race, but then he dropped out. Now that he’s rejoined the race , a recent opinion poll places him three percentage points ahead of his political rivals in the lead up to the October 28th elections. Ireland doesn’t allows same-sex marriage, same-sex adoptions, or gay blood donations—could a Norris presidency help bring change in the Emerald Isle?

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  • Sean Reynolds

    This piece is just so ill-informed about Irish politics; the Irish President is a largely ceremonial role, s/he has NO legislative power at all.

  • SteveC

    Oh but still.

    An elected, openly gay head-of-state.

    That would be extraordinary.

    Vote Norris.

  • Erich

    @SteveC Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir, the Prime Minister of Iceland is a lesbian.

  • SteveC

    And of course an Irish President (gay or straight) cannot legalize gay marriage, adoption or blood donation.

    It’s a ceremonial role. No power attached.

    But if a gay person gets elected then it means that the straight world finally sees us as equal. they would have voted for us after all. Norris is ahead in the polls at the moment.

  • SteveC

    The PM of Iceland is the head of government. She is not the head of state. Iceland also has a president. Norris would be the first.

  • Ian

    The answer to the headline is emphatically no. The Irish President has no executive powers so the question makes no sense in the first place

  • Lefty

    Hell tern Irelund in to SUDDIM N GOMURRAH!!!!

  • tavdy79

    @Erich: That’s not the same thing: Iceland has a parliamentary system, and Sigurdardottir is the head of government, not the head of state.

    In a presidential system or absolute monarchy (USA, Iran, Belarus, Sudan, Saudi Arabia etc.) the offices are one and the same, however in a parliamentary system they are separate, with executive powers either divided between them (France, Jordan, Bhutan, Angola, UAE, etc.) or wholly limited to the head of government (Germany, Norway, Canada, New Zealand, Japan, etc.) with the head of state a purely ceremonial figurehead.

    That said, it’s possible that Norris’s election would move the campaign to end anti-LGBT discrimination in marriage, adoption, blood donation, etc. forward a lot. While a ceremonial figurehead might seem like a waste of space, in most cases their position outside the main political structure allows them great leeway to comment on serious political issues without worrying about realpolitik. (Exceptions include countries like Sweden, where the constitution imposes an absolute political neutering of the monarch.) So while Norris might not be able to get the relevant laws through the Oireachtas, he can certainly heavily influence public and political opinion in their favour.

  • Robert in NYC

    tavdy79, to make marriage legal in the Irish Republic, wouldn’t that require a constitutional change?

  • SteveC

    No constitutional change is required to legalise same sex marriage in Ireland.

    That’s the excuse used by the last government to not introduce it.

    Many legal experts claim that no constitutional amendement is required.

    Ireland will have marriage equality within 10 years I think. Until that point they have civil partnerships which are similar to marriage in all areas except adoption and parentaL rights.

  • Elly

    I don’t know why you lot even bother writing about Irish politics, you don’t know anything about it. Norris, who is clearly corrupt and morally questionable, generally disliked by most of the Irish gay community (at least the ones who aren’t like OMG A GAY IN PUBLIC). The president has no power, decisions on marriage and adoption will require a referendum because you have to read the constitution as it was intended when it was written. It was not intended to ever include gay people, sorry, but thats just how it is.

  • Chad

    Maybe he’ll win or even come close but I remember last time when he defended some ped0.

  • Paschal

    @Chad: He has always condemned child abuse, including that of children in their mid to high teens. I don’t want him to become president though. The president ought to be an uncontroversial figure, vertainly a lot less controversial than him.

Comments are closed.