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The Prime Minister of Spain, officially the President of the Government of Spain
Spain
(Spanish: Presidente del Gobierno de España),[2] is the head of the government of Spain. The office was established in its current form by the Constitution of 1978. The Spanish monarch nominates a candidate for the presidency who stands before the Congress of Deputies of Spain, the lower house of the Cortes Generales
Cortes Generales
(parliament), for a vote of confidence in a process known as a parliamentarian investiture, effectively an indirect election of the head of government by the elected Congress of Deputies. In practice, the Prime Minister is almost always the leader of the largest party in the Congress. Since current constitutional practice in Spain
Spain
calls for the King to act on the advice of his ministers, the Prime Minister is effectively the country's chief executive. Mariano Rajoy
Mariano Rajoy
of the People's Party has been the prime minister since he was sworn in on December 21, 2011, after winning the 2011 general election.

Contents

1 Official title 2 Royal nomination and congressional confirmation 3 Constitutional authority 4 Return of Democracy 5 Peerages 6 Recent Presidents of the Government 7 Living former Prime Ministers 8 See also 9 References

Official title[edit] The Spanish head of government is since 1938 known, in Spanish, as the Presidente del Gobierno. Literally translated, the title is "President of the Government"[3][4] but nevertheless the office-holder is commonly referred to in English as the "prime minister", the usual term for the head of government in a parliamentary system. However Spanish translations for parliamentary heads of government will follow the original titles used; thus, for example:

the Prime Minister of France
Prime Minister of France
(whose original title is premier ministre, meaning Prime Minister) would be called the Primer Ministro de Francia, and the Prime Minister of Italy
Prime Minister of Italy
(whose original title is Presidente del Consiglio dei ministri, meaning President of the Council of Ministers) would be called Presidente del Consejo de Ministros de Italia.

However, exceptions exist:

The Prime Minister of Israel
Prime Minister of Israel
(whose original title is ראש הממשלה, meaning Head of Government) would, under the original-titles rule, be called Jefe del Gobierno de Israel, but, as the Hebrew title "ראש הממשלה", similarly to the English "prime minister", is a catch-all title used for heads of government, is actually referred to as the Primer Ministro de Israel, The Prime Minister of the Czech Republic
Prime Minister of the Czech Republic
(whose original title is Předseda vlády, meaning Chairman of the Government) is actually referred to as the Presidente del Gobierno de la República Checa, due to the Spanish language
Spanish language
having no direct equivalent to the Czech "Předseda" or the English "Chairman".

In Spain
Spain
the head of the government is often called simply Presidente, meaning "President". This sometimes causes confusion since it is the usual term for the head of state in a republic; both President George W. Bush and his brother Florida Governor Jeb Bush
Jeb Bush
had, on separate occasions, referred to José María Aznar
José María Aznar
as "President" (or in Jeb's case, "President of the Republic of Spain"),[5][6] and Donald Trump referred to Mariano Rajoy
Mariano Rajoy
both as "President" and "Mr. President" during Rajoy's 2017 White House visit.[7] The custom to name the head of government as "President" dates back to the reign of Isabella II of Spain, specifically during the regency of Mary Christine of Borboun, when the official title was Presidente del Consejo de Ministros ("President of the Council of Ministers"), which remained until 1939, when the Second Spanish Republic
Second Spanish Republic
ended. Before 1834 the figure was known as Secretario de Estado ("Secretary of State"), a denomination used today for junior ministers. Royal nomination and congressional confirmation[edit] Once a general election has been announced by the king, political parties nominate their candidates to stand for the presidency of the government-usually the party leader. An outgoing prime minister who is not running in that election remains in office as a caretaker until their successor is sworn in, such as José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero; this differs from other parliamentary governments whose prime ministers always lead their parties during the election campaign. Following every general election to the Cortes Generales
Cortes Generales
(Cortes), and other circumstances provided for in the constitution, the king meets with and interviews the leaders of the parties represented in the Congress of Deputies, and then consults with the Speaker of the Congress of Deputies (officially, Presidente de Congreso de los Diputados de España, who, in this instance, represents the whole of the Cortes Generales
Cortes Generales
and was himself elected from within the Congress to be the Speaker) before nominating a candidate for the presidency. This process is spelled out in Section 99 of Title IV.[8] Often minor parties form part of a larger major party, and through that membership it can be said that the king fulfills his constitutional mandate of consulting with party representatives with Congressional representation.

Title IV Government and Administration Section 99(1) & (2)

(1) After each renewal of the Congress and the other cases provided for under the Constitution, the King shall, after consultation with the representatives appointed by the political groups with parliamentary representation, and through the Speaker of the Congress, nominate for the Presidency of the Government. (2) The candidate nominated in accordance with the provisions of the foregoing subsection shall submit to the Congress the political program of the Government he or she intends to form and shall seek the confidence of the House.[8]

Constitutionally, the Prime Minister and the cabinet are responsible to the monarch, not the Cortes. On paper, the monarch is free to name anyone he sees fit as his prerogative to form a government. In practice, however, due to the need for the Prime Minister to command the confidence of the Congress of Deputies, it is all but impossible for a monarch to appoint a government entirely of his own choosing or keep it in office against the will of the Congress of Deputies. For this reason, the Prime Minister is usually the leader of the largest party in the Congress.[8] For the Crown to nominate the political leader whose party controls the Congress can be seen as a royal endorsement of the democratic process— a fundamental concept enshrined in the 1978 Constitution. By political custom established by Juan Carlos I since the ratification of the 1978 Constitution, the king's nominees have all been from parties who maintain a plurality of seats in the Congress. However, there is no legal requirement for this. In theory, the largest party could end up not ruling if rival parties gather into a majority, forming a coalition—though this has never happened at the national level. As political activity in Spain
Spain
has effectively coalesced into a two-party system between the Spanish Socialist Workers' Party and the People's Party, the two major parties usually adopt some aspects of the minor party platforms in an effort to attract them into parliamentary pacts to edge out their rival party in the event that no party is able to command an absolute majority of the Congress by themselves. The monarch is normally able to announce his nominee on the day following a general election. The monarch's order nominating a prime ministerial candidate is countersigned by the Speaker of the Congress, who then presents the nominee before the Congress of Deputies in a process known as a Congressional Investiture (Investidura parlamentaria). During the Investiture proceedings the nominee presents his political agenda in an Investiture Speech to be debated and submitted for a Vote of Confidence (Cuestión de confianza) by the Congress, effecting an indirect election of the head of government.[8][9] A simple majority confirms the nominee and his program.[8] At the moment of the vote, the confidence is awarded if the candidate receives a majority of votes in the first poll (currently 176 out of 350 MPs), but if the confidence is not awarded, a second vote is scheduled two days later in which a simple majority of votes cast (i.e., more "yes" than "no" votes) is required. After the nominee is confirmed, the Speaker of the Congress formally reports to the king of the congressional confirmation. The king then appoints the candidate as the new Prime Minister. The king's order of appointment is countersigned by the Speaker. During the swearing-in ceremony presided over by the king, customarily at the Salón de Audiencias in the Zarzuela Palace, the Prime Minister-elect of the Government takes an oath of office over an open constitution and next to the Bible. The oath as taken by Prime Minister Zapatero on his first term in office on 17 April 2004 was:[10]

Juro/Prometo, por mi conciencia y honor, cumplir fielmente las obligaciones del cargo de Presidente del Gobierno con lealtad al Rey, guardar y hacer guardar la Constitución como norma fundamental del Estado, así como mantener el secreto de las deliberaciones del Consejo de Ministros.

I swear/promise, under my conscience and honor, to faithfully execute the duties of the office of Prime Minister with loyalty to the King, obey and enforce the Constitution as the main law of the State, and preserve in secret the deliberations of the Council of Ministers.

In 2008, from the time the king nominated José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero for a second term as prime minister immediately following the 2008 general election, almost a month passed before Zapatero was able to present his Investiture Speech before the Congress and stand for a Vote of Confidence.[9] If no overall majority was obtained on the first Vote of the Confidence, then the same nominee and program is resubmitted for a second vote within forty-eight hours.[8] Following the second vote, if confidence by the Congress is still unreached, then the monarch again meets with political leaders and the Speaker, and submits a new nominee for a vote of confidence.[8] If, within two months, no candidate has won the confidence of the Congress then the King dissolves the Cortes and calls for a new general election.[8] The King's royal decree is countersigned by the Speaker of the Congress.[8] Once appointed, the Prime Minister forms his government whose ministers are appointed and removed by the King on the Prime Minister's advice. In the political life of Spain, the king would already be familiar with the various political leaders in a professional capacity, and perhaps less formally in a more social capacity, facilitating their meeting following a general election. Conversely, nominating the party leader whose party maintains a plurality and who are already familiar with their party manifesto facilitates a smoother nomination process. In the event of coalitions, the political leaders would customarily have met beforehand to hammer out a coalition agreement before their meeting with the King. Government and the Cortes sit for a term no longer than four years when the prime minister tenders his resignation to the king and advises the king to dissolve the Cortes, prompting a general election. It remains within the king's prerogative to dissolve the Cortes if, at the conclusion of the four years, the prime minister has not asked for its dissolution, according to Title II Section 56.[11] The king may call for earlier elections on the advice of the prime minister, known as a snap election, but no sooner than a year after the prior general election.[12] Additionally, if the Government loses the confidence of the Cortes, then it must resign. In the event that a prime minister resigns without advising the monarch to call for new elections, dies or becomes incapacitated while in office, then the government as a whole resigns and the process of royal nomination and appointment takes place. The deputy prime minister, or in the absence of such office the first minister by precedence, would then take over the day-to-day operations in the meantime as acting prime-mister, even while the deputy prime minister themselves may be nominated by the King and stand for a vote of confidence. The prime minister's position is strengthened by constitutional limits on the Congress' right to censure the government. While the Congress can offer a motion of censure at any time, such a motion is of no effect unless a prospective successor is nominated at the same time. When this happens, the person named in the censure motion as the prospective successor is automatically deemed to have the confidence of the Congress, and the monarch is required to appoint him as the new prime minister. Constitutional authority[edit] Title IV of the Constitution defines the government and its responsibilities.[8] The government consists of the President of the Government and ministers of state. The government conducts domestic and foreign policy, civil and military administration, and the defense of the nation all in the name of the king on behalf of the people. Additionally, the government exercises executive authority and statutory regulations.[8] There is no provision in the Spanish Constitution for explicitly granting any emergency powers to the government, which could be understood as exorcizing the ghost of the recent dictatorship in Spain. However, Title II, Sections 56 of the constitution vests the monarch as the "arbitrator and moderator of the institutions" of government, [The King] arbitrates and moderates the regular functioning of the institutions (arbitra y modera el funcionamiento regular de las instituciones).[13][14] This provision could be understood as allowing the king or his government ministers to exercise emergency authority in times of national crisis, such as when the king used his authority to back the government of the day and call for the military to abandon the 23-F
23-F
coup attempt in 1981. Return of Democracy[edit] Adolfo Suárez
Adolfo Suárez
was the first democratically elected prime minister of the post-Franco government (157th prime minister since 1834). He was appointed by King Juan Carlos on 3 July 1976. By count, he was the 138th prime minister overall. In the Spanish general election, 1977 his position as prime minister was confirmed by a vote. Peerages[edit] Peerages in Spain
Spain
are created by the Grace of the King, according to the Spanish Ministry of Justice, and are the highest marks of distinction that he may bestow in his capacity as the fons honorum in Spain. Conventionally, the Title of Concession creating the dignity must be countersigned by a government minister. When a title is created for a former president, the succeeding president customarily countersigns the royal decree. As a reward for national service, the king awarded peerages to two of his former presidents who have since retired from active politics: Adolfo Suárez
Adolfo Suárez
was created 1st Duke of Suárez; and Leopoldo Calvo-Sotelo
Leopoldo Calvo-Sotelo
was created 1st Marquesado de la Ría de Ribadeo (es). Additional titles of nobility have been created by the king for other government ministers, usually at the advice of the president of the government. As of 2005, the king has created 40 hereditary titles of nobility. Recent Presidents of the Government[edit] Further information: List of Prime Ministers of Spain
Spain
§ Kingdom of Spain
Spain
(1975–present)

Living former Prime Ministers[edit] There are three living former Spanish Prime Ministers:

Felipe González
Felipe González
(age 76) (1982–1996) 

José María Aznar
José María Aznar
(age 65) (1996–2004) 

José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero
José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero
(age 57) (2004–2011) 

The most recent Prime Minister to die was Adolfo Suárez
Adolfo Suárez
(served 1976–1981) on 23 March 2014, aged 81. See also[edit]

Elections in Spain List of Prime Ministers of Spain Politics of Spain

References[edit]

^ "El director de Gabinete de Rajoy, el mejor pagado de la Presidencia". elpais.com (in Spanish). El Pais. El presidente del Gobierno, Mariano Rajoy, percibe 78.185 euros brutos al año (6.515 euros brutos al mes).  ^ Secretary of State for Communications of the Ministry of the Presidency. "President of the Government". Ministry of the Presidency of Spain. Retrieved 16 July 2011.  ^ Official web site of La Moncloa, the Spanish Prime Minister's Office Accessed 2009-03-05 ^ The Oxford Spanish Dictionary and Grammar, ed. C.Lea et al., 2nd ed.(2001) ^ "Joint Press Conference with President George W. Bush
George W. Bush
and President Jose Maria Aznar" The White House. Retrieved 2 October 2013. ^ " Jeb Bush
Jeb Bush
agradece el apoyo "del presidente de la República española"" [ Jeb Bush
Jeb Bush
thanks the "President of the Spanish Republic" for his support]. El País (in Spanish). 18 February 2003. Retrieved 14 July 2016.  ^ "Trump repeatedly called the prime minister of Spain
Spain
'president,' and everyone is confused". Mashable. 2017-09-26. Retrieved 2017-10-10.  ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Part IV Government and Administration ^ a b Speech by Zapatero at the session for his investiture as Prime Minister ^ (in Spanish) Video: Rodríguez Zapatero is sworn into his second term (RTVE's Canal 24H, April 12, 2008) ^ Title II Section 56 the monarch is the "arbitrator and moderator of the regular functioning of the institutions", "arbitra y modera el funcionamiento regular de las instituciones" ^ Snap elections have been used only threes since the 1978 Constitution was ratified, ex-PM Felipe González
Felipe González
invoked his constitutional right to dissolve the Cortes three times in 1989, 1993, and 1996 ^ Título II. De la Corona, Wikisource ^ The Royal Household of H.M. The King website

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Prime Ministers of Spain

Acting prime ministers shown in italics.

Queen Isabella II (1833–1868)

Martínez de la Rosa Toreno Álava Álvarez Mendizábal Istúriz Calatrava Espartero Bardají Heredia-Spínola Frías Alaix Pérez de Castro A. González Ferraz Cortázar Sancho Espartero Ferrer A. González Rodil J. M. López Gómez Becerra Olózaga González-Bravo Narváez Miraflores Narváez Sotomayor Pacheco Salamanca García Goyena Narváez Clonard Bravo Murillo Roncali Lersundi Sartorius Mendigorría Rivas Espartero O'Donnell Narváez Armero Istúriz O'Donnell Arrazola Mon Narváez O'Donnell Narváez González-Bravo Havana

Democratic Sexennium (1868–1874)

Madoz Serrano Prim Topete Serrano Ruiz Zorrilla Malcampo Sagasta Topete Serrano Mendigorría Ruiz Zorrilla Figueras Pi Salmerón Castelar Serrano Sierra Bullones Sagasta

The Restoration (1874–1931)

Cánovas Jovellar Martínez Campos Sagasta Posada Azcárraga Silvela Fernández-Villaverde Maura Montero Moret López Domínguez Vega de Armijo Canalejas García Prieto Romanones Dato Maura Sánchez de Toca Bugallal Sánchez-Guerra Primo de Rivera Berenguer Aznar-Cabañas

Second Republic (1931–1939)

Alcalá-Zamora Azaña Lerroux Martínez Barrio Samper Chapaprieta Portela Barcía Casares Martínez Barrio Giral Largo Negrín

Spain
Spain
under Franco (1936–1975)

Franco Carrero Fernández-Miranda Arias

Since 1975

Arias Santiago Suárez Calvo-Sotelo F. González Aznar Zapatero Rajoy

v t e

Departments and agencies of the Government of Spain

Cabinet

President of the Government of Spain Vice President of the Government of Spain

Ministry of the Presidency Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation Ministry of Justice Ministry of Defence Ministry of the Treasury and Public Function Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness Ministry of the Interior Ministry of Public Works Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Environment Ministry of Health Ministry of Employment and Social Security Ministry of Energy, Tourism and Digital Agenda Spokesperson of the Government of Spain

Agencies

Bank of Spain Centro Nacional de Inteligencia Spanish National Research Council
Spanish National Research Council
(CSIC) Instituto Nacional de Estadística National Securities Market Commission National Transplant Organization Meteorological Office Agencia Española de Protección de Datos Agencia Española de Cooperación Internacional para el Desarrollo Agencia Tributaria Agencia Nacional de la Evaluación de la Calidad y Acreditación Boletín Oficial del Estado Agencia Estatal de Seguridad Ferroviaria Spanish Aviation Safety and Security Agency Agencia Estatal de Evaluación de las Políticas Públicas y la Calidad de los Servicios Agencia Estatal de Investigación Spanish Anti-Doping Agency Intelligence Center for Counter-Terrorism and Organized Crime Department of Homeland Security

v t e

Heads of state and government of Europe

Heads of state

UN members   and observers

Albania Andorra Armenia1 Austria Azerbaijan1 Belarus Belgium Bosnia and Herzegovina Bulgaria Croatia Cyprus1 Czech Republic Denmark Estonia Finland France Georgia1 Germany Greece Hungary Iceland Ireland Italy Kazakhstan1 Latvia Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macedonia Malta Moldova Monaco Montenegro Netherlands Norway Poland Portugal Romania Russian Federation1 San Marino Serbia Slovakia Slovenia Sovereign Military Order of Malta Spain Sweden Switzerland Turkey1 Ukraine United Kingdom Vatican City

Partially recognised2

Abkhazia1 Kosovo Northern Cyprus1 South Ossetia1

Unrecognised states3

Artsakh1 Transnistria

Former countries

Czechoslovakia East Germany Serbia and Montenegro Soviet Union1 Yugoslavia

Heads of government

UN members   and observers

Albania Andorra Armenia1 Austria Azerbaijan1 Belarus Belgium Bosnia and Herzegovina Bulgaria Croatia Cyprus1 Czech Republic Denmark Estonia Finland France Georgia1 Germany Greece Hungary Iceland Ireland Italy Kazakhstan1 Latvia Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macedonia Malta Moldova Monaco Montenegro Netherlands Norway Poland Portugal Romania Russian Federation1 San Marino Serbia Slovakia Slovenia Sovereign Military Order of Malta Spain Sweden Switzerland Turkey1 Ukraine United Kingdom Vatican City

Partially recognised2

Abkhazia1 Kosovo Northern Cyprus1 South Ossetia1

Unrecognised states3

Artsakh1 Transnistria

Former countries

Czechoslovakia East Germany Serbia and Montenegro Soviet Union1 Yugoslavia

1. Partially or entirely in Asia, depending on geographical definition. 2. Recognised by at least one United Nations member. 3. Not recognised by any United Nations members.

v t e

European Council

List of meetings

'98 '99 '00 '01 '02 '03 '04 (Jan–Apr) '04 (May–Dec) '05 '06 '07 '08 '09 '10 '11 '12 '13 (Jan–Jun) '13 (Jul–Dec) '14 '15

Tusk (President of the European Council) Juncker (President of the European Commission)

Kurz Michel Borisov Plenković Anastasiades Babiš Løkke Rasmussen Ratas Sipilä Macron Merkel Tsipras Orbán Varadkar Gentiloni Kučinskis Grybauskaitė Bettel Muscat Rutte Morawiecki Costa Iohannis Pellegrini Cerar Rajoy Löfven May

European Union
European Union
Portal

v t e

Prime minister

Prime Ministers by country

Abkhazia Afghanistan Albania Algeria Angola Antigua and Barbuda Armenia Artsakh Aruba Australia Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Bermuda Bhutan Bosnia and Herzegovina Brazil Bulgaria Burkina Faso Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Central African Republic Chad Congo (Kinshasa) Cook Islands Croatia Cuba Curaçao Northern Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica East Timor Egypt Equatorial Guinea Estonia Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France Ghana Georgia Greece Greenland Grenada Guinea Guyana Haiti Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran Iraq Ireland Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya North Korea South Korea Kosovo Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Laos Latvia Lebanon Lithuania Luxembourg Macedonia Malaysia Malta Mauritius Moldova Mongolia Montenegro Morocco Myanmar (Burma) Nagorno-Karabakh Namibia Nepal Netherlands New Zealand Niue Norway Pakistan Papua New Guinea Peru Philippines Poland Portugal Qatar Romania Russia Rwanda Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa São Tomé and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Singapore Sint Maarten Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Ossetia Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Swaziland Sweden Syria Taiwan (Republic of China) Tajikistan Tanzania Thailand Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkmenistan Turkey Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom Uzbekistan Vanuatu Vietnam Yemen Western Saha

.