Berlin (May. 25)
Out of the deadlock that exists in the Prussian Parliament one fact has emerged to-day that has filled German Jewry with a feeling of relief, and that is that in the absence of any possible combination that would give the Hitlerists, although the largest single Party in the Diet, an opportunity of forming a Government, the Braun Centre Socialist Government, will continue to administrate affairs in the country, which is a guarantee of the maintenance of stability and order.
At to-day’s sitting of the Diet, the Hitlerists decided to accept the situation created by the rules of the House, under which, while they themselves, as the largest Party, appointed the President of the Chamber, choosing Deputy Kerrl, who on taking over the chair from the Seniority President, the Hitlerist General Lietzmann, said that he would conduct the business of the House in a non-party manner, they agree, however, to having two Vice-Presidents from the Social Democratic and the Centre Party respectively.
After this formal business was concluded, a furious disturbance broke out, in which the Hitlerists and the Communists came to blows and chairs and other missiles were hurled about, injuring several of the Deputies. The Centre Party Vice-President, Deputy Baumhoff, was in the chair at the time.
The Chamber has been adjourned for a week.
CENTRE NEGOTIATING WITH NAZIS FOR COALITION PRUSSIAN GOVERNMENT SAYS “MANCHESTER GUARDIAN”
Behind the scenes, the “Manchester Guardian” reports to-day, deep issues are at stake. Although there is despair to-night of any agreement being reached on normal Parliamentary lines, the negotiations between the Nazis and the Catholic Centre for the new Prussian Cabinet are being eagerly discussed. The crucial point of these up to the moment is the fact that the Centre, in view of the general unrest, claim the Ministry of the Interior in Prussia, with the all-important control of the Prussian police.
According to the “Times” “the Centre is likely to be firm in its refusal to elect a Nazi to the Premiership”.
The parties have a week to try to agree on a new Premier for Prussia, the “Times” says to-day. If the Nazis could obtain this post they would hold two of the three seats, and therewith the casting vote, in the triumvirate, which decides when the Diet shall be dissolved and new elections held, and would thus be in a very strong position. Moreover, the Minister-President of Prussia exercises some of the functions of that State President who has never been elected in Prussia and his powers are considerable.
The Centre, therefore, is likely to be firm in its refusal to elect a Nazi to the Premiership, especially as the continuance of Dr. Bruening’s policy in the Reich is, in its eyes, essential, and the Nazis obstinately refuse support for this.
In Wurttemberg, where the elections left a situation similar to that in Prussia, it points out, the attitude of the Centre is significant. It has expressed readiness to enable the Nazis to take part in a Coalition Government in positions corresponding to their strength, but it refuses to agree to their having the State Presidency or the Ministry of the Interior.
No one can tell, says the party’s statement, what course events will take in the Reich in the coming critical months, and it is all the more the duty of the Centre to see that the conduct of the State and its forces remain in trustworthy hands. Wide circles of the nation would fail to understand it if the Centre let the helm pass into hands that offer no guarantee for a sure and constitutional continuance of the State’s business at a time so pregnant with dangers.
In Wurttemberg, therefore, the coalition negotiations are suspended, and the “business Ministry” carries on. The position in Prussia seems likely to follow the same course.