Simon Harris Elected Taoiseach By The Dáil Today

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The Dáil today voted to elect Simon Harris as the 15th Taoiseach since the foundation of the State.  The Dáil held a roll call vote with 88 TDs voting in favour and 69 voting against.  The Dáil is to reconvene at 5.30pm for announcements as to Ministerial appointments – in the interim Mr Harris will visit Aras an Uachtaráin  to receive his seal of office from President Higgins to formally become Taoiseach.

Mr Harris takes up leadership of the coalition government which has featured rotating Taoiseachs Leo Varadkar and Micheal Martin.

Tipperary TDs Jackie Cahill Fianna Fáil and Michael Lowry Regional Independent supported Mr Harris.  Deputies Mattie McGrath Rural Independents, Alan Kelly Labour and Martin Browne Sinn Fein opposed the appointment.The Dáil session today began with a raucous debate on the order of business for the week resulting in the Dáil voting not to sit until 2pm tomorrow.  Minister Heather Humphreys proposed Mr Harris for this position and the motion was second by Deputy Peter Burke Fine Gael. The leaders of Fianna Fáil and the Green Party Micheal Martin and Eamonn Ryan also supported the motion. The leaders of the opposition parties then set out their positons on the vote with Sinn Fein, Labour, the Social Democrats, Aontu and others calling for a general election. Opposition TDs were sharply critical of Mr Harris’s and the Government’s record in office and of the current housing crisis in particular. The Rural Independent TD Danny Healy Rae proposed  Michael Healy Rae for the position of Taoiseach – the motion was second by Deputy Mattie McGrath.