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Virgin Islands: Government#

Country nameconventional long form: United States Virgin Islands
conventional short form: Virgin Islands
former: Danish West Indies
abbreviation: USVI
CapitalCharlotte Amalie Charlotte Amalie
geographic coordinates: 18 21 N, 64 56 W
time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Dependency statusorganized, unincorporated territory of the US with policy relations between the Virgin Islands and the US under the jurisdiction of the Office of Insular Affairs, US Department of the Interior
Administrative divisionsnone (territory of the US); there are no first-order administrative divisions as defined by the US Government, but there are three islands at the second order; Saint Croix, Saint John, Saint Thomas
Constitution22 July 1954 - the Revised Organic Act of the Virgin Islands functions as a constitution for this territory of the US (2013)
Executive branchchief of state: President Barack H. OBAMA (since 20 January 2009); Vice President Joseph R. BIDEN (since 20 January 2009)
head of government: Governor John DeJONGH (since 1 January 2007)
cabinet: NA
elections: under the US Constitution, residents of unincorporated territories, such as the Virgin Islands, do not vote in elections for US president and vice president; however, they may vote in the Democratic and Republican presidential primary elections; governor and lieutenant governor elected on the same ticket by popular vote for four-year terms (eligible for a second term); election last held on 2 November 2010 (next to be held in November 2014)
election results: John DeJONGH reelected governor; percent of vote - John DeJONGH 56.3%, Kenneth MAPP 43.6%
Flag descriptionwhite field with a modified US coat of arms in the center between the large blue initials V and I; the coat of arms shows a yellow eagle holding an olive branch in its right talon and three arrows in the left with a superimposed shield of seven red and six white vertical stripes below a blue panel; white is a symbol of purity, the letters stand for the Virgin Islands
Independencenone (territory of the US)
Judicial branchhighest court(s): Supreme Court of the Virgin Islands (consists of the chief justice and 2 associate justices); note - court established by US Congress in 2004 and assumed appellate jurisdiction in 2007
judge selection and term of office: justices appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Virgin Islands Senate; justices initially serve renewable 10-year terms; chief justice elected to position by peers for a 3-year term
subordinate courts: Superior Court (renamed in 2004 vice the Territorial Court); US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit (has appellate jurisdiction over the District Court of the Virgin Islands; it is a territorial court and is not associated with a US federal judicial district); District Court of the Virgin Islands
Legal systemUS common law
Legislative branchunicameral Senate (15 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve two-year terms)
elections: last held on 6 November 2012 (next to be held in November 2014)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - Democratic Party 10, ICM 2, independent 3
note: the Virgin Islands elects one non-voting representative to the US House of Representatives; election last held 6 November 2012 (next to be held on November 2014)
International organization participationIOC, UPU, WFTU (NGOs)
National holidayTransfer Day (from Denmark to the US), 31 March (1917)
Political pressure groups and leadersNA
Political parties and leadersDemocratic Party (Arturo WATLINGTON)
Independent Citizens' Movement or ICM (Usie RICHARDS)
Republican Party (Gary SPRAUVE)
Suffrage18 years of age; universal; note - island residents are US citizens but do not vote in US presidential elections
Government typeNA
Diplomatic representation in the USnone (territory of the US)
National anthemname: "Virgin Islands March"
lyrics/music: multiple/Alton Augustus ADAMS, Sr.
note: adopted 1963; serves as a local anthem; as a territory of the United States, "The Star-Spangled Banner" is official (see United States)
Diplomatic representation from the USnone (territory of the US)