File No. 763.72/3723
The Minister in Cuba ( Gonzales ) to the Secretary of State
[Received April 8, 5.30 a.m.]
Congress convened at 4 o’clock this afternoon. Thirty minutes later Senate unanimously passed measure authorizing the President to declare war on Germany. Fifteen minutes after six, House unanimously passed the act, members standing and cheering. Act becomes effective on publication by the President in Official Gazette to-night. Act gives fullest power to the President allowed under the Constitution. Measures providing funds Quartermaster General, imposing war taxes must be introduced separately.
Part of preamble follows:
The fact that the United States of America has declared on the 6th instant the existence of a state of war between it and the Imperial German Government presents the exact and due opportunity for setting such situation since the historic ties and the gratitude which bind us to the great American Republic impel us to take the field where she is going to struggle for the right to use the high seas, the freedom of commerce, the respect due neutrals, and international justice.
The act follows:
- Article 1. A state of war is hereby formally declared to exist as from this date between the Government of Cuba and the Imperial German Government and the President of the Republic is hereby authorized and directed to employ all the forces of the nation and the resources of our Government to make war upon the Imperial German Government for the purpose of upholding our rights, safe-guarding our territory, providing for our security, preventing any acts which may be done to our injury and defending navigation of the high seas, the freedom of commerce, the rights of neutrals, and international justice.
- Article 2. The President of the Republic is hereby authorized to dispose of the land and sea forces in such manner as he shall deem necessary, utilizing the existing forces, reorganizing them or creating new ones, and to dispose of the economic resources of the nation as required.
- Article 3. The President of the Republic will report to Congress the measures which he shall adopt in fulfillment hereof.