Leo Varadkar Officially Becomes Taoiseach Of Ireland

The Cork South Central TD, who unsuccessfully challenged Leo Varadkar for the Fine Gael leadership, had reportedly been keen to take over the key post in Mr Varadkar's new government.

In a move created to heal any divisions in his own party, Varadkar on Tuesday appointed the man he defeated, Simon Coveney, as deputy leader of Fine Gael. He will announce his Cabinet later in the evening, Politico reported. But Varadkar's election is part of a broader transformative shift that has taken place in Ireland in recent decades - Ireland actually legalized same-sex marriage in 2015, the first country to do so by popular vote.

"For some, politics is a bad word, but we've seen in some countries and this one that it can be a way to convince people that change is possible".

Varadkar cemented his win Wednesday, with a confirmation parliamentary vote of 57 to 50, with 47 abstentions.

Varadkar confirmed he would meet this week with Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams and Arlene Foster, leader of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) in Northern Ireland to discuss Brexit.

Now, Ireland has its first youngest and openly gay prime minister.

"Enda Kenny's leadership enabled me to become an equal citizen in my own country two short years ago and to aspire to hold this office, an aspiration I once thought was beyond my reach, at least if I chose to be myself", Varadkar said.

His parents met in England in the 1960s and lived in India for a time before moving to Ireland, according to the Guardian.

"The government I lead will not be of the left or the right".

Earlier in the day, the Irish parliament voted in favor of appointing Varadkar as the country's new head of government.

Roscommon Fine Gael Senator Frank Feighan tweeted a picture of Varadkar making a speech, saying: "Copper face Jacks is rocking tonight!" Three years later, he was elected to represent the area in parliament.

A Downing Street spokesperson said: "The Prime Minister spoke to Leo Varadkar on the phone earlier today to offer her congratulations on becoming Taoiseach".

"I don't think we could get the former Taoiseach to stretch that far", he said.