The Republic of Chile threw off allegiance to the Crown of Spain by the declaration of independence of September 18, 1810, finally freeing itself from Spanish rule in 1818. The Constitution voted by the representatives of the nation on May 25, 1833, with a few subsequent amendments, establishes, three powers in the State—the legislative, the executive, and the judicial. The legislative power is vested in the National Congress, consisting of the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies. The Senate is composed of 37 members popularly elected by provinces for the term of six years, in the proportion of one Senator for every three Deputies; while the Chamber of Deputies composed of 118 members chosen directly by departments for a period of three years, consists of one representative for every 30,000 of the population, or a fraction not less than 15,000; the present number of deputies was determined in 1910 on the basis of the census results of 1907. Both bodies are chosen by the same electors. Electors must be 21 years of age, and able to read and write. The executive is exercised by the President of the Republic elected for a term of five years, by indirect vote, the people nominating, by ballot, delegates who appoint the President. 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 day of a Presidential election is June 25 of the last of the five years of a Presidency.
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