Structure of the Imperial and Weimar Governments

Discussions on all aspects of Imperial Germany not covered in the other sections.
Berichter
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Location: Missouri, USA

Structure of the Imperial and Weimar Governments

Post by Berichter » 29 May 2004 13:11

What exactly was the nature of the German political structure under the Hohenzollerns and the Weimar Republic? It seems to me that both governments were confederations of the German Länder that were bound together by the Imperial/Federal government. What exactly were the sovereign rights retained by the Länder governments under these systems?

Cordially,

Berichter

nondescript handle
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Re: Structure of the Imperial and Weimar Governments

Post by nondescript handle » 29 May 2004 14:17

Berichter wrote:[...]What exactly were the sovereign rights retained by the Länder governments under these systems?[...]


This is a big subject, its easier to ask what was under imperial/federal control.
Under the Imperial constitution of 1871 the empire could enact laws in the fields of:
- emigration, immigration and citizenship (exept for Bavaria which remained sovereign in this field)
- customs and foreign trade
- measuring system and coinage of money
- supervision of the banking system
- merchant fleet
- railroads, roads and canals (exept for Bavaria which had some special rights)
- interstate inland water transportation
- postal and telegraphic services (exept Bavaria and Württemberg which had some special rights)
- interstate cooperation of authorities
- trade laws
- penal code
- code of legal procedure
- military and defence
- regulation of the press
- foreign relations

All other things were matters of the states.

Regards
Mark

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