Ireland Goes In The Opposite Direction Of US: Elects 37 Year Old To Lead The Country

In a shocking turn of events, Simon Harris, the 37-year-old Fine Gael party leader, was sworn in as the Republic of Ireland’s newest prime minister on Tuesday. Dubbed the ‘TikTok taoiseach’ for his social media skills, Harris ascended to power following Leo Varadkar’s sudden resignation amid criticism over two failed constitutional amendments and the government’s handling of housing and immigration issues.

Source: Worldmatrix

Harris, who grew up in a coastal town in County Wicklow and advocated for autism services as a teenager, became Ireland’s youngest prime minister after securing endorsement from Fine Gael’s coalition partners, Fianna Fáil and the Greens.

Source: Worldmatrix

Varadkar resigned on March 20, citing personal and political reasons amid backlash over referendum defeats regarding family definitions and women’s roles in the home. His departure marked a significant shift in Irish politics.

Source: Worldmatrix

As Ireland’s youngest prime minister, Harris inherits a government facing criticism for its handling of housing shortages, rising crime rates, and the mass influx of immigrants, making up the fourth largest non-national population in the EU.

In his first speech to Harris pledged to bring “new ideas, a new energy, and a new empathy to public life,” focusing on law and order, helping small businesses, reconnecting with rural voters, and fixing the housing crisis.

During Saturday’s Fine Gael annual conference, Harris outlined his plans for extending support for developers and first-time buyers in an attempt to resolve the long-standing housing issue.

Harris is set to announce a cabinet reshuffle on Tuesday, with over ten Fine Gael lawmakers opting not to run for re-election.

The government faces opposition from protests against migrant centers and a stalled hate speech bill, while the number of homeless people in Ireland reached an all-time high of 13,531 in January.

Harris, who was first elected to parliament at 24 and became health minister before turning 30, has a remarkable political career marked by passing alcohol legislation and taking control of the early pandemic response.

Mary Lou McDonald called for a general election after Harris’ election, stating that he represents “more of the same” policies that have led to housing crises and skyrocketing rents.