837.00/2963: Telegram

The Ambassador in Cuba ( Guggenheim ) to the Secretary of State

22. Chamber of Representatives yesterday approved and Senate will probably approve today, a measure authorizing the President to suspend constitutional guarantees whenever and wherever he may consider it necessary and without limitation as to duration. There appears to be some question whether this measure is constitutional as article 40 of the constitution stipulates that guarantees may only be suspended temporarily although there is no indication what is meant by “temporarily”. In the absence of new authorization present period of suspension would have terminated February 11th. In this general connection please refer to my strictly confidential despatch No. 517 of January 20th.