The Republic of Chile threw off allegiance to the Crown of Spain, constituting a national government on September 18, 1810, finally freeing itself from Spanish rule in 1818. By the Constitution which came into force on October 18, 1925, legislative power is vested in the National Congress, consisting of the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies, both of which are nominally elected by direct popular vote, though by a national agreement reached by the various political parties in February, 1930, the election scheduled for March 1929 was waived and a Congress, selected by the parties, began its sessions in May. The Senate consists of 45 members, elected for eight years, who represent 9 provincial groups. Each group elects five senators. One-half the Senate is renewable every four years. The Chamber of Deputies consists of 132 members elected by departments or groups of departments, one member for every 30,000 inhabitants or fraction of not less than 15,000. Electors are all registered citzens of 21 years of age or over, who are able to read and write. All voting is by ballot. Congress is to be in ordinary session from May 21 to September 18. The President of the Republic is elected for a term of six years, by direct popular vote. A retiring President is not re-eligible. In legislation the President has a modified veto; a bill returned to the Chambers with the President’s objections may, by a two-thirds vote of the members present (a majority of the members being present), be sustained and become law. The validity of all elections of President, Deputies and Senators is determined by a special body called Tribunal Calificador, consisting of five members chosen by lot from among the following: One each from past-presidents or vice-presidents of the Chamber and Senate; two from members of the Supreme Court; and one from members of the Court of Appeal of the city where Congress meets.
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