Division Five. THE IMPERIAL LEGISLATION
Bills are introduced by the Imperial Government or from the body of the Reichstag.
The Imperial statutes are enacted by the Reichstag.
The introduction of bills of the Imperial Government needs the concurrence of the Reichsrat. If there is lack of agreement between the Imperial Government and the Reichsrat, the Imperial Government can nevertheless introduce the bill, but in connection therewith it has to present the dissenting view of the Reichsrat.
If the Reichsrat decides on a bill to which the Imperial Government does not assent, the latter has to introduce the bill in the Reichstag, together with an exposition of the Government’s viewpoint.
The Imperial President has to verify the constitutionally enacted statutes and promulgate them within a month in the Imperial Gazette.
Imperial statutes, if they do not otherwise provide, become of force with the fourteenth day after the lapse of the day on which the Imperial Gazette is published in the Imperial capital.
The promulgation of an Imperial statute is to be postponed two months if a third of the Reichstag so demands. The Imperial President can, regardless of this demand, promulgate statutes which the Reichstag and Reichsrat declare to be urgent.
A statute enacted by the Reichstag is to be submitted, before its promulgation, to a Popular Decision if the Imperial President within a month so determines.
A statute, whose promulgation is postponed upon demand of at least a third of the Reichstag, is to be submitted to a Popular Decision, if one-twentieth of those entitled to vote so petition.
A Popular Decision is also to be had when a tenth of those entitled to vote petition for the introduction of a bill. The Popular Petition must cover a fully drafted bill. The bill is to be submitted to the Reichstag by the Government, together with a presentation of its attitude. The Popular Decision is not had if the desired bill is adopted by the Reichstag without change.
As to the Budget, tax statutes and salary regulations, the Imperial President alone can cause a Popular Decision to be had.
An Imperial statute shall regulate the procedure connected with the Popular Decision and with the Popular Petition.
The Reichsrat has the right to veto statutes enacted by the Reichstag.
The veto must be announced to the Imperial Government within two weeks after the final enactment of the statute by the Reichstag, and must be supplied with reasons within another fortnight.
In case of a veto the statute shall be laid before the Reichstag for another vote. If thereby no agreement between the Reichstag and the Reichsrat is reached, the Imperial President can, within three months, order a Popular Decision on the subject of the disagreement. If the President makes no use of this right, the statute is deemed unenacted. If the Reichsag overrides the veto of the Reichsrat by a two-thirds vote, the President has to promulgate, within three months, the statute as enacted by the Reichstag, or to order a Popular Decision.
An enactment of the Reichstag can be set aside by a Popular Decision only when a majority of those entitled to vote take part in the voting.
The Constitution can be amended by way of legislation. However, enactments of the Reichstag amending the Constitution are effective only if two-thirds of the legal number of members are present and at least two-thirds of those present vote for them. And resolutions of the Reichsrat proposing amendments of the Constitution need a majority of two-thirds of the votes cast. If an amendment of the Constitution is to be passed upon by a Popular Decision upon a Popular Petition, the assent of a majority of those entitled to vote is necessary.
If the Reichstag overrides a veto of the Reichsrat in adopting an amendment of the Constitution, the Imperial President may not promulgate this statute if the Reichsrat within two weeks demands a Popular Decision.
The Imperial Government shall issue the necessary general administrative regulations for the execution of the Imperial statutes, in so far as the statutes do not otherwise provide. For this purpose it shall need the consent of the Reichsrat if the execution of the Imperial statutes is left with the Land authorities.