The speaker's official role is to moderate debate, make rulings on procedure, announce the results of votes, and the like. The speaker decides who may speak and has the powers to discipline members who break the procedures of the chamber or house. The speaker often also represents the body in person, as the voice of the body in ceremonial and some other situations. The title was first recorded in 1377 to describe the role of Thomas de Hungerford in the Parliament of England.
By convention, speakers are normally addressed in Parliament as 'Mister Speaker', if a man, or 'Madam Speaker', if a woman. In other cultures other styles are used, mainly being equivalents of English "chairman" or "president". Many bodies also have a speaker pro tempore (or deputy speaker), designated to fill in when the speaker is not available.
The examples and perspective in this article deal primarily with the English-speaking world and do not represent a worldwide view of the subject. (September 2015) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
The Speaker of the Australian House of Representatives is the presiding officer of the Australian House of Representatives, the lower house of the Parliament of Australia. The President of the Australian Senate is the presiding officer of the Australian Senate, the upper house of the Parliament of Australia.
Italian parliamentarism is centered on the Presidents of the two Houses, vested in defense of the members and of the assembly as a whole; so "the Speaker invites the representative of the Government not to deviate from the rules of parliamentary behavior". Now constitutional community highlights changes also in this role.
In Canada, the Speaker of the House of Commons is the individual elected to preside over the House of Commons, the elected lower house. The speaker is a Member of Parliament (MP) and is elected at the beginning of each new parliament by fellow MPs. The Speaker's role in presiding over Canada's House of Commons is similar to that of speakers elsewhere in other countries that use the Westminster system. The Speaker does not vote except in the case of a tie. By convention, if required to vote, the Speaker will vote in favour of continuing debate on a matter, but will not ultimately vote for a measure to be approved.
The Speaker of the Senate of Canada is the presiding officer of the Senate of Canada, the appointed upper house. The Speaker represents the Senate at official functions, rules on questions of parliamentary procedure and parliamentary privilege, and presides over debates and voting in the "Red Chamber". The Speaker of the Senate is appointed by the Governor General of Canada from amongst sitting senators upon the advice of the Prime Minister. The Speaker has a vote on all matters. In the event of a tie, the matter fails.
At the provincial level, the presiding officer of the provincial legidslatures is called the "Speaker" in all provinces except Quebec, where the term "President" is used. The presiding officer fulfills the same role as the Speaker of the House of Commons.
In Singapore, the Speaker of the Parliament of Singapore is the head officer of the country's legislature. By recent tradition, the Prime Minister nominates a person, who may or may not be an elected Member of Parliament (MP), for the role. The person's name is then proposed and seconded by the MPs, before being elected as Speaker. The Constitution states that Parliament has the freedom to decide how to elect its Speaker.
While the Speaker does not have to be an elected MP, they must possess the qualifications to stand for election as an MP as provided for in the Constitution. The Speaker also cannot be a Cabinet Minister or Parliamentary Secretary, and must resign from those positions prior to being elected as Speaker.
The Lord Speaker is the presiding officer of the House of Lords. The commonly used "Speaker of the House of Lords" is not correct. The presiding officer of the House of Lords was until recently the Lord Chancellor, who was also a member of the government (a cabinet member) and the head of the judicial branch. The Lord Chancellor did not have the same authority to discipline members of the Lords that the speaker of the Commons has in that house. The Lord Speaker is elected by the members of the House of Lords and is expected to be politically impartial.
The Speaker of the United States House of Representatives presides over the lower house of Congress, the House of Representatives. This post is second in line to the presidency—after the vice president—and is therefore the third highest-ranking national office overall. In practice, this post is the highest-ranking in Congress, because the president of the US Senate is the vice president, who has his/her office, and predominant responsibilities, at the White House, and therefore does not have a day-to-day presence at the Congress.
In the forty-nine states that have a bicameral legislature, the highest position in the lower house is usually called the "speaker". In Nebraska—the only state with a unicameral legislature—the senators elect one senator to serve as "Speaker of the Nebraska Legislature". In Tennessee, the senators elect a "Speaker of the Senate" who presides over the Tennessee Senate and serves as lieutenant governor.
The presiding officer for an upper house of a bicameral legislature usually has a different title, although substantially the same duties.
When the upper house is called a senate, the equivalent title is often President of the Senate. Australia, Chile, the United States and many other countries have upper houses with presiding officers titled "president". In several American republics, the vice president of the country serves as the president of the upper house.
This pattern is not universal, however. Some upper houses, including those of Canada, have a speaker.
The Presiding Officer of the National Assembly for Wales, Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament, and Presiding Officer of the Northern Ireland Assembly fulfill the same role as the speaker.
|Country||Legislature (or legislative chamber)||Title||Incumbent|
|Albania||Parliament of Albania||Speaker||Ilir Meta|
|Armenia||National Assembly of Armenia||Speaker||Hovik Abrahamyan|
|Australia||Australian House of Representatives||Speaker||Tony Smith|
|Austria||National Council||President of the National Council||Doris Bures|
|Bangladesh||Jatiya Sangsad||Speaker||Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury|
|»Parliament of Belgium||Chamber of Representatives of Belgium||President (Voorzitter/Président/Präsident)||Siegfried Bracke (N-VA)|
|»Parliament of Belgium||Senate of Belgium||President (Voorzitter/Président/Präsident)||Christine Defraigne (MR)|
|»Brussels-Capital Region||Parliament of the Brussels-Capital Region||President (Président/Voorzitter)||Charles Piqué (PS)|
|»Flanders (Community and Region)||Flemish Parliament||President (Voorzitter)||Jan Peumans (N-VA)|
|»French Community||Parliament of the French Community||President (Président)||Philippe Courard (PS)|
|»German-speaking Community||Parliament of the German-speaking Community||President (Präsident)||Karl-Heinz Lambertz (SP)|
|»Wallonia||Parliament of Wallonia||President (Président/Präsident)||André Antoine (politician) (cdH)|
|Botswana||National Assembly of Botswana||Speaker||Gladys Kokorwe|
|Bulgaria||National Assembly of Bulgaria||Chairperson||Tsetska Tsacheva|
|Cambodia||National Assembly of Cambodia||President||Heng Samrin|
|»Parliament of Canada||Senate of Canada||Speaker (Président)||George Furey|
|»Parliament of Canada||House of Commons of Canada||Speaker (Président)||Geoff Regan|
|»National People's Congress||Standing Committee of the National People's Congress||Chairman||Li Zhanshu|
|»Hong Kong||Legislative Council of Hong Kong||President||Andrew Leung|
|»Macau||Legislative Assembly of Macau||President (presidente)||Ho Iat Seng|
|Croatia||Croatian Parliament (Sabor)||President||Željko Reiner|
|» Parliament of the Czech Republic||Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic||Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic||Radek Vondráček|
|» Parliament of the Czech Republic||Senate of the Parliament of the Czech Republic||Speaker of the Senate of the Czech Republic||Milan Štěch|
|Denmark||Parliament of Denmark (Folketinget)||Speaker||Pia Kjærsgaard|
|» Faroe Islands||Parliament of the Faroe Islands (Løgtingið)||Speaker||Páll á Reynatúgvu|
|» Greenland||Parliament of Greenland (Inatsisartut)||Speaker||Lars Emil Johansen|
|Egypt||House of Representatives (Egypt)||Speaker||Ali Abdel Aal|
|Finland||Parliament of Finland (eduskunta/riksdagen)||Speaker||Maria Lohela|
|France||National Assembly (Assemblée Nationale)||President||François de Rugy|
|Ghana||Parliament of Ghana||Speaker||Mrs. Justice Joyce Adeline Bamford-Addo|
|Germany||Bundestag||President of the Bundestag (Bundestagspräsident)||Wolfgang Schäuble|
|Hungary||National Assembly of Hungary (Magyar Köztársaság Országgyűlése)||President (elnöke)||László Kövér|
|Iceland||Parliament of Iceland||Speaker||Steingrímur J. Sigfússon|
|India||Lok Sabha||Speaker||Sumitra Mahajan|
|Indonesia||People's Representative Council (Dewan Perwakilan Rakyat)||Chairman||Fadli Zon|
|Ireland||Dáil Éireann||Head of the Council (Ceann Comhairle)||Seán Ó Fearghaíl|
|Iran||Majlis of Iran||Speaker/Chairman [رئیس]||Ali Larijani|
|Israel||Knesset||Speaker/Chairman [יושב-ראש]||Yuli-Yoel Edelstein|
|Italy||Italian Chamber of Deputies||President||Laura Boldrini|
|»National Diet||House of Representatives||Speaker||Tadamori Oshima|
|»National Diet||House of Councillors||Speaker||Chuichi Date|
|»Parliament of Kenya||Senate of Kenya||Speaker||Kenneth Lusaka|
|»Parliament of Kenya||National Assembly of Kenya||Speaker||Justin Muturi|
|Kosovo||Assembly of Kosovo||Chairman||Jakup Krasniqi|
|Latvia||Saeima||Chairwoman of Parliament||Ināra Mūrniece|
|Lebanon||Parliament of Lebanon||Speaker||Nabih Berri|
|Liechtenstein||Landtag of Liechtenstein||President||Albert Frick|
|Libya||Council of Deputies||President||Aguila Saleh Issa|
|Macedonia||Assembly of the Republic of Macedonia||Speaker||Talat Xhaferi|
|Malaysia||House of Representatives of Malaysia (Dewan Rakyat)||Speaker||Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia|
|Malta||House of Representatives of Malta||Speaker||Angelo Farrugia|
|Mexico||Chamber of Deputies (Cámara de Diputados)||President||Ruth Zavaleta Salgado|
|Montenegro||Assembly of Montenegro||President||Ranko Krivokapić|
|Nepal||Parliament of Nepal||Speaker||Onsari Gharti Magar|
|Netherlands||House of Representatives of the Netherlands||Speaker||Khadija Arib|
|New Zealand||House of Representatives||Speaker||Trevor Mallard|
|Nigeria||National Assembly of Nigeria||Speaker||Yakubu Dogara|
|Norway||Stortinget||President of the Storting (Stortingspresident)||Olemic Thommessen|
|North Korea||Supreme People's Assembly||Chairman of the Presidium||Kim Yong-nam|
|Pakistan||National Assembly of Pakistan||Speaker||Sardar Ayaz Sadiq|
|Paraguay||Chamber of Senators of Paraguay||President||Mario Abdo Benítez|
|Philippines||House of Representatives of the Philippines||Speaker||Pantaleon Alvarez|
|Poland||Sejm of the Republic of Poland||Marshal||Marek Kuchciński|
|Portugal||Assembly of the Republic||President||Eduardo Ferro Rodrigues|
|»Azores||Legislative Assembly of the Azores||President (presidente)||Ana Luís|
|»Madeira||Legislative Assembly of Madeira||President (presidente)||José Tranquada Gomes|
|Russia||State Duma||Chairman||Vyacheslav Volodin|
|Serbia||National Assembly of Serbia||President||Maja Gojković|
|Singapore||Parliament of Singapore||Speaker||Tan Chuan-Jin|
|Slovakia||National Council of the Slovak Republic||Speaker||Andrej Danko|
|Solomon Islands||National Parliament of Solomon Islands||Speaker||Sir Peter Kenilorea|
|South Africa||National Assembly of South Africa||Speaker||Baleka Mbete|
|South Korea||National Assembly of South Korea||Speaker||Chung Sye-kyun|
|South Sudan||National Legislative Assembly of South Sudan||Speaker||James Wani Igga|
| »Cortes Generales
|Congress of the Deputies||President||Ana Pastor|
| »Cortes Generales
|Spanish Senate||President||Pío García-Escudero|
|Sri Lanka||Parliament of Sri Lanka||Speaker||Karu Jayasuriya|
|Suriname||National Assembly of Suriname (De Nationale Assemblee)||Chairman||Jennifer Simons|
|Switzerland||National Council||President||Jürg Stahl|
|Taiwan||Legislative Yuan||President||Su Jia-chyuan|
|Thailand||House of Representatives of Thailand||President||Somsak Kiatsuranont|
|Tonga||Legislative Assembly of Tonga||Speaker||Sialeʻataongo Tuʻivakanō|
|Ukraine||Verkhovna Rada||Chairman||Andriy Parubiy|
|»Parliament of the United Kingdom||House of Lords of the United Kingdom||Lord Speaker||Norman Fowler|
|»Parliament of the United Kingdom||House of Commons of the United Kingdom||Speaker||John Bercow|
|» Isle of Man||House of Keys||Speaker||Steve Rodan|
|» Northern Ireland||Northern Ireland Assembly||Speaker||Robin Newton|
|» Scotland||Scottish Parliament||Presiding Officer||Ken Macintosh|
|» Wales||National Assembly for Wales||Presiding Officer (Llywydd)||Elin Jones|
|United States||United States House of Representatives||Speaker||Paul Ryan|
|Uruguay||Chamber of Deputies of Uruguay||President||Ivonne Passada|
|Vanuatu||Parliament of Vanuatu||Speaker||George Andre Wells|
|Venezuela||National Assembly||President||Henry Ramos Allup|
|Vietnam||National Assembly of Vietnam||Chairman||Nguyễn Sinh Hùng|
|Zimbabwe||House of Assembly of Zimbabwe||Speaker||Jacob Mudenda|
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