Leo Varadkar, gay son of Indian to be next Irish PM

  • The son of an Indian immigrant who came out as gay in 2015 will be the next Irish prime minister.
  • In 1970s, he met Miriam an Irish nurse in England whom he later married and moved to Ireland.
  • Varadkar earned 60 percent of the vote in the center-right party’s leadership contest, which was decided by the Fine Gael members, councillors, and parliamentary party members.
  • His rival was Simon Coveney who earned the remaining 40% votes.
  • Under internal Fine Gael rules, the parliamentary party constitutes 65% of the vote, party members 25%, and city and country councillors 10%.
  • Coveney captured majority support among grassroots members, but Varadkar won over the crucial parliamentarian college.
  • He will also be the youngest person ever and the first from an ethnic minority background to become the Prime Minister of Ireland.
  • Leo Varadkar has earned the distinction of becoming Ireland’s first gay prime minister.The once-staunchly Catholic country, in which homosexuality had been decriminalized in 90’s and Ireland was the first country to accept Gay marriage in 2015.
  • This shows the drastic social change in a country once the country which discriminated a gay has a GAY leader.

Same-sex marriage in the Republic of Ireland

Same-sex marriage has been legal in Ireland since 16 November 2015. A referendum on 22 May 2015 amended the Constitution of Ireland to provide that marriage is recognised irrespective of the sex of the partners. The measure was signed into law by the President of Ireland as the Thirty-fourth Amendment of the Constitution of Ireland on 29 August 2015.

The Marriage Act 2015, passed by the Oireachtas on 22 October 2015 and signed into law by the Presidential Commission on 29 October 2015, gave legislative effect to the amendment. Marriages of same-sex couples in Ireland began being recognised from 16 November 2015 and the first marriage ceremonies of same-sex couples in Ireland occurred on 17 November 2015.

Civil partnerships, granted under the Civil Partnership and Certain Rights and Obligations of Cohabitants Act 2010, gave same-sex couples rights and responsibilities similar, but not equal, to those of civil marriage.

The 2011 Irish census revealed 143,600 cohabiting couples, up from 77,000 in 2002. This included 4,042 in same-sex relationships, up from 1,300.

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