At stake in this election:
- The office of President of Ireland
Description of government structure:
- Chief of State: President Michael D. HIGGINS
- Head of Government: Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Leo VARADKAR
- Assembly: Ireland has a bicameral Parliament (Oireachtas) that consists of the Senate (Seanad Éireann) with 60 seats and the House of Representatives (Dail Éireann) with 166 seats.
Description of electoral system:
- The President is elected by a majority system with preferential vote to serve a 7-year term. The presidential term is renewable once. The electoral system is alternative vote. The President is a member of Parliament ex officio.
- The Prime Minister (Taoiseach) is nominated by the House of Representatives and appointed by the President.
- In the Senate (Seanad Éireann), 43 members are elected by indirect vote to serve 5-year terms, 11 members are appointed by the prime minister to serve 5-year terms and 6 members are elected by indirect vote to serve 5-year terms.
- 43 members are elected by five panels representing vocational interests. 6 are elected by graduates of two colleges.
- In the House of Representatives (Dáil Éireann) 166 members are elected through a single transferable vote (STV) proportional representation system to serve 5-year terms. One seat is reserved for the Speaker of the House. There are 43 multi-member districts with magnitudes from 3 to 5.
Main candidates in the election:
- Michael D Higgins
- Party: Independent*
- Sean Gallagher
- Liadh Ni Riada
- Party: We Ourselves/Sinn Féin
- Gavin Duffy
- Joan Freeman
- Peter Casey
* Mr. Higgins has support from three parties: Fine Gael, Fianna Fáil, and the Labour Party.
Population and number of registered voters:
- Population: 4,803,748 (2018 est.)
- Registered Voters: 3,202,442 (2011)
- Female Population: 2,420,456 (2018 est.)
- Is Ireland a signatory to CEDAW: N/A
- Has Ireland ratified CEDAW: Yes, Accession (23 December 1985)
- Gender Quota: Yes (Parliament)
- Female candidates in this election: Yes
- Number of Female Parliamentarians: 35 (Parliament); 18 (Senate)
- Human Development Index Position: 8
- Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI) Categorization: N/A
- Is Ireland a signatory to CRPD: Yes (30 March 2007)
- Has Ireland ratified CRPD: No
- Population with a disability: 733,846