Rui Tavares

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Rui Tavares
Tavares in 2022
Member of the Assembly of the Republic
Assumed office
29 March 2022
Member of the Lisbon City Council
Assumed office
18 October 2021
MayorCarlos Moedas
Member of the European Parliament
In office
14 July 2009 – 30 June 2014
Personal details
Rui Miguel Marcelino Tavares Pereira

(1972-07-29) 29 July 1972 (age 51)
Lisbon, Portugal
Political partyLIVRE (2014–present)
Other political
Left Bloc (2009–2011)
Greens/EFA (2011–2014)
SpouseMarta Bobichon Loja Neves[1]
Alma materNOVA University Lisbon
École des hautes études en sciences sociales (PhD)
ProfessionHistorian, translator

Rui Miguel Marcelino Tavares Pereira (born 29 July 1972) is a Portuguese historian and politician. He has been elected a Member of the Assembly of the Republic in the 2022 legislative election, and has been a member of the Lisbon City Council since 2021.

Tavares is one of the founders and leaders of the green political party LIVRE, established in 2014. He had previously served as an independent Member of the European Parliament, elected in 2009 for the Left Bloc.

Early life and career[edit]

Rui Tavares was born in Lisbon on 29 July 1972, to a bank clerk (and occasionally shepherd) father and a homemaker mother. Tavares had two older half-siblings (born of his father's first wedding; cut short when he became a widower) and two older siblings.[3]

The family was originally from the small rural village of Arrifana, in Azambuja, in the Ribatejo Province, where Tavares spent part of his childhood. The area had a significant labour movement background, influenced by republicanism and anarcho-syndicalism in the early 20th century: the anti-clerical spirit of the First Portuguese Republic saw the local parish priest temporarily banished from the town and, unusually for the traditionally Catholic country, it then gained a significant Evangelical Baptist population. The Protestant denomination was indirectly introduced in the town by an atheist great-uncle of Tavares, who invited a Baptist pastor to the village to spite the Catholic hierarchy.[3]

Living with his parents and his next older brother, Tavares attended primary school in Arrifana; of his much older siblings, his sister was already married at the time, and the two other brothers were attending university, one in Lisbon and the other in Czechoslovakia (sponsored by the Portuguese Communist Youth, of which he was a member).[3] Tavares's next older brother attended secondary school in Azambuja and used to bring him books from the school library; by his own admission, Tavares was "bookish" ever since his mother taught him how to read, and he took great pride in having read The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn at this time "as they should be read: perched up in a tree".[3] He became interested in politics at around age 11 or 12, when he started reading anything he could on the different political ideologies at the Municipal Library in Penha de França, and became fascinated with anarchism and left-libertarianism.[3]

Tavares earned a licentiate in History of Art from the Faculty of Social and Human Sciences of NOVA University Lisbon in 1994, a master's degree in Social Sciences from the Institute of Social Sciences of the University of Lisbon in 1998, and a doctorate in History from the École des hautes études en sciences sociales, in Paris, in 2014.[4] He taught at university level for two years.[2][3]

Political career[edit]

Rui Tavares, Member of the European Parliament, at a meeting of the Greens–European Free Alliance.

He was elected Member of the European Parliament in 2009 for the Left Bloc. In June 2011, Tavares became an independent within the Greens–European Free Alliance group.[5] During his time at the European Parliament, he focused on refugee and fundamental rights issues.

Tavares Report[edit]

In June 2013, he was commissioned by the European Parliament to submit a report on Hungarian constitutional concerns. The Tavares Report urged the Hungarian authorities "to implement as swiftly as possible all the measures the European Commission as the guardian of the treaties deems necessary in order to fully comply with EU law... [and with] the decisions of the Hungarian Constitutional Court and... the recommendations of the Venice Commission, the Council of Europe and other international bodies…".[6]


Rui Tavares speaks during the 10th Congress of LIVRE, in 2021

In 2014, he founded the new party LIVRE.

In the 2021 local elections, Tavares was elected member of the Lisbon City Council.[7] Tavares had run alongside incumbent Mayor Fernando Medina on the electoral list of the "Mais Lisboa" coalition (Socialist Party and LIVRE), to be the councillor with the "Human Rights, Knowledge, Science, and Culture" portfolio on a Socialist-led City Council. The majority, however, was won by the "Novos Tempos" coalition (PSD/CDS–PP/Alliance/MPT/PPM); Tavares stated his intention to serve as opposition within the City Council to the new centre-right Mayor, Carlos Moedas.[8]

Tavares was elected Member of the Assembly of the Republic in the 2022 legislative election for the Lisbon constituency. Tavares pledged to get António Costa, who was re-elected Prime Minister with an absolute majority, to work with other left-wing parties.[9][10]


  1. ^ Lopes, Melissa (28 January 2022). "Mulher de Rui Tavares no gabinete de Santos Silva" [Rui Tavares's wife in Santos Silva's staff]. Novo Semanário (in Portuguese). Retrieved 5 February 2022.
  2. ^ a b Monteiro, Ana Luísa (25 January 2022). "Rui Tavares: a infância entre Arrifana e Lisboa, as polémicas com Louçã e Joacine e a "eco-geringonça"" [Rui Tavares: the childhood between Arrifana and Lisbon, the controversies with Louçã and Joacine, and the "eco-contraption"]. SIC Notícias (in Portuguese). Retrieved 5 February 2022.
  3. ^ a b c d e f Mota Ribeiro, Anabela (2 January 2011). "Quando a democracia fizer 48 anos, Rui Tavares abandona a política" [When Democracy turns 48, Rui Tavares will abandon politics]. Público (in Portuguese). Retrieved 5 February 2022.
  4. ^ "Investigadores: Instituições, Governação e Relações Internacionais - Rui Tavares". Centro de Estudos Internacionais. ISCTE – University Institute of Lisbon. Retrieved 10 February 2022.
  5. ^ "Rui Tavares corta ligação ao BE e muda de bancada no Parlamento Europeu". Público. 22 June 2011. Archived from the original on 25 June 2011. Retrieved 5 July 2011.
  6. ^ cs - čeština. "REPORT on the situation of fundamental rights: standards and practices in Hungary (pursuant to the European Parliament resolution of 16 February 2012) - A7-0229/2013". Retrieved 2014-04-15.
  7. ^ "Livre elegeu Rui Tavares em Lisboa" [LIVRE gets Rui Tavares elected in Lisbon]. Jornal de Notícias (in Portuguese). 27 September 2021. Retrieved 20 October 2021.
  8. ^ Domingues, Nuno (29 September 2021). "Os três vereadores do Livre e Cidadãos por Lisboa vão ser oposição a Moedas" [The three councillors from LIVRE and Citizens for Lisbon will be opposition to Moedas] (in Portuguese). TSF. Retrieved 20 October 2021.
  9. ^ "O Livre faz oito anos, Rui Tavares vai ser deputado e Ana vai pintar o cabelo de verde. Cantam todos juntos por "uma terra sem amos"". CNN Portugal (in Portuguese). 2022-01-31. Retrieved 2022-01-31.
  10. ^ Pincho, João Pedro (31 January 2022). "A festa de anos do Livre teve a eleição de Rui Tavares como brinde". Público (in Portuguese). Retrieved 31 January 2022.