« ZurückWeiter »
arrangement of the Hungarian compromise. At the request of the Emperor, Déak came to Vienna, and was able to assure the monarch, in the name of his party, of the complete acceptance by the Hungarians of the project of 1867, in the event of the creation of a responsible Hungarian Ministry. Deak's visit banished from the minds of the people in Vienna every lingering remnant of distrust towards Hungary; and on the 11th of February, Count Andrassy, whom public opinion in Hungary had designated for the post of Minister President, arrived in the capital, and Formation of
a responsible received from the Emperor the decree appoint-Hungarian
Ministry. ing him to that high office, and at the same time intrusting him with the formation of a Hungarian Ministry
The Imperial and Royal rescript officially published on the 17th of February, conferred upon Hungary the restitution of her full parliamentary rights. It now became her duty to realize the pledges given by her leaders, and, by making concessions to the unity of the Empire, to assist in consolidating its existence and power. These concessions, which are contained in the project of
the Committee of sixty-seven above alluded to, consisted of the definition of the affairs which were to be regarded as common to both halves of the Empire, and of the creation of a common medium for their constitutional management. Hungary was thus to be joined to Western Austria by an indissoluble tie, and the principle of the Pragmatic Sanction, which recognises the legislative and administrative independence of Hungary, and at the same time declares the indivisibility of the countries belonging to the House of Hapsburg, was clad in a new form. “ Affairs in common were defined to mean the direction of the foreign policy of the Empire, together with its diplomatic representation abroad, and a joint army under the supreme command of the Emperor. Both parts of the Empire were to contribute proportionately to the cost of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and of the Army. Hungary was likewise to contribute to the interest of the State debt. All international treaties were to receive the sanction of both legislatures. All affairs requiring equal consideration, such as the Customs dues, indirect taxes, and the currency, were also to be regulated by treaties, subject to the approval of both moieties of the realm.
In order to regulate the proper constitutional The “delegamanagement of the affairs “in common,” the institution of the “delegations” was introduced. Each legislature annually elects a delegation consisting of sixty members (forty of whom are elected by each of the lower houses, and twenty by each of the upper houses). These delegations assemble alternately at Vienna and Pesth for the purpose of confidentially discussing the analogous bills or propositions of the Government, and of communicating to each other the resolutions come to thereon, exchanging views on points of difference, and, in case no agreement is arrived at, proceeding to a division without a debate. The concordant resolutions of both delegations are sanctioned by the monarch as common laws, the execution of which is intrusted to the ministries of both countries. Finally, the joint Austro-Hungarian Ministers are responsible to the delegations, which also vote the Budget. This is the substance of the principal resolutions of the commission of the “sixty-seven," which were accepted on the 30th of March by the
Hungarian Lower House, and on the 3rd of April by the Hungarian Upper House. Thus were the pledges of the Hungarian leaders faithfully re
deemed, and the rejoicings which resounded far and Coronation near on the Coronation of the Emperor Francis of the Emperor as King Joseph I. as King of Hungary, at Buda-Pesth, in of Hungary.
June, 1867, presented to Europe the spectacle of a contented Hungary and a resuscitated Austria. The tranquillity which the consummation of the compromise brought about in Hungary did not, however, extend to the Cis-Leithan portion of the Empire, where, on the contrary, affairs now became even more complicated than before. The Federalistic majorities of the Bohemian, Moravian, and Carniolan Diets were resolved to send their delegates only to Count Belcredi's abortive “Extraordinary Reichsrath ;” and they were consequently at once dissolved. The Galician Diet also manifested symptoms of resistance, but was deterred by the energetic conduct of the Government towards the other Diets. The remaining provincial assemblies proceeded, without raising any difficulties, to the election of their delegates to the Reichsrath, and, after the lapse of a few
weeks, the newly-elected Diets of Bohemia, Moravia, and Carniola did the same. The termination of the elections, however, and the meeting of the Reichsrath, only represented a partial solution of the difficulty. The resistance of the national and federalistic opposition was certainly broken up; but, on the other hand, the German Constitutional party was in a state of utter disorganization, and could not agree upon unanimous action, as the centralists continued their agitation against the Hungarian compromise. This state of political atrophy (as the present President of the Lower House, Dr. Kaiserfeld, very aptly designated the then state of things) had to be overcome. necessary that confidence in the intentions of the Government should be re-established, and proofs be adduced that the liberal reforms which the Emperor had already announced in his messages to the Diets, were not merely to be carried out for the purpose of gaining willing shoulders to bear the burthens imposed upon Western Austria by the compromise with Hungary, but also to create and insure to this side of the Leitha a state of affairs which should be strictly liberal