To What Extent Was Germany a Parliamentary Democracy? Essay

1143 Words Mar 2nd, 2013 5 Pages
To what extent was Germany a parliamentary democracy in the years 1900-1914?
A parliamentary democracy is the power in Germany being shared amongst everybody. The positions are democratically elected by the population of the country. The way Germany was run is based upon the Constitution the power lies between the Reichstag, the chancellor and the Kaiser.
Germany was a parliamentary democracy based on the constitution that Germany was run by. The Bundesrat being part of the constitution consisted of 58 members who were elected by the state assemblies, the Bundesrat had the power in theory to the law making process and by this having this possibly the right to alter the constitution. The Bundesrat had the power to veto legislation
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The Zabern affair highlighted the limited powers the Reichstag had the vote of no confidence made by the Reichstag was completely ignored by the Chancellor because of who he was more reliable to. He did have the right to ignore resolutions passed by the Reichstag. The considerable power Kaiser Wilhelm had over the Government of Germany was extensive with the right to appoint who he wanted as Chancellor and dissolve the Reichstag. The Daily Telegraph Affair of 1908 indicated how the Kaiser made such a big decision of wanting be an alliance of Britain without having consulted with the Reichstag. Although it was the Kaiser’s mistake of saying such a thing in the interview Kaiser Wilhelm blamed Chancellor Bulow and later in summer 1908 his budget was defeated, ending his Chancellorship based on there being no confidence in the Kaiser. Over the years Kaiser Wilhelm got through numerous Chancellors such as Bismark, Bulow and because he had the right to do so he would appoint someone different when he lost trust or was concerned about them being loyal to him.
The weaknesses of the Reichstag did effect how effective the parliamentary democracy of Germany was. They were more interested in their own pressure groups than to unite and achieve together making Germany a parliamentary democracy. The Hottentot elections proved the Reichstag to be weak the SPD and Centre

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