File No. 763.72/12113
The Chargé in the Netherlands ( Bliss) to the Secretary of State
[Received November 7, 4 a.m.]
4944. Your 2334, 4th.1 Following is text of constitutional changes according to North German Gazette.
Paragraph 2 is omitted from article 21 of Constitution. Bundesrath, October 8, Reichstag, October 24, signed by Emperor November 2. Article 11 amended to read: “Consent of Bundesrath and Reichstag required for declaration war in name of Empire. Peace treaties as well as treaties with foreign countries pertaining to matters of imperial legislation require consent of Bundesrath and Reichstag.” Following added to article 15: “Imperial Chancellor requires confidence of Reichstag in order to conduct his office. Imperial Chancellor bears responsibility for all acts of political importance performed by Emperor in exercise of powers to which he is entitled according to Imperial Constitutions. Imperial Chancellor and his representatives are responsible for their conduct of office to Bundesrath and Reichstag.” In article 17 the words “who hereby take over the responsibility” are omitted. Following added to article 53: “The appointment, transfer, promotion and dismissal of officers and officials of navy is effected with countersignature of Imperial Chancellor.” In article 64, first sentence, following words are inserted after “Emperor”: “With the counter-signature of the Imperial Chancellor.” In article 66 the following paragraphs 5 and 6 are added: “Appointment, transfer, promotion and dismissal of officials and military officials of contingent is effected with countersignature of Minister of War of such contingent. Ministers of War are responsible to Bundesrath and Reichstag for the administration of their respective contingents.” Foregoing passed Reichstag October 26, Bundesrath [October] 28, signed by Emperor November 2.