President of Iran
Iran still has a president, however, and since the change in the constitution and the removal of the post of Prime Minister and merging most of the prime ministership duties with the President's, this once figurehead post has become a position of significant government influence.
The President of Iran is elected in a national election by universal adult suffrage. There remain some restrictions on the selection of candidates for the election — only those individuals approved by the Council of Guardians who are directly or indirectly selected by the Supreme Leader are permitted to run. The approval process is considered to be a check on the requirements of the constitution, and usually amounts to a very small minority of candidates being approved. In the 1997 election, for example, only four out of 238 presidential candidates were approved by the council. No woman has ever been approved.
According to the Iranian constitution, When the President dies or is impeached, a special provisional Presidential Council temporarily rules in his place until an election can be held.
The President automatically becomes the Head of Council of Cultural Revolution and the Head of Council of National Security.
Most of Iran's presidents have left office in somewhat of a chaotic fashion, and the transition from one to another has not always been smooth.
- Mohammad Ali Rajai – elected president on August 2, 1981 in the wake of Banisadr's impeachment. Assassinated on August 30 of the same year.
- Ali Khamenei – elected president in October, 1981. Re-elected in 1985. Became Supreme Leader after the death of Ayatollah Khomeini in 1989.
- Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani – elected president in August of 1989, re-elected in 1993, served until January 1997.
- Mohammad Khatami – elected president in August of 1997, re-elected in 2001. First reformist to hold office.