Gambar halaman
PDF
ePub

which France and England were to be joined ultimately under one king, was, after important stipulations had been executed, submitted to the states-general for confirmation. To Henry V, of England, this confirmation seemed to furnish additional security for the full execution of the treaty.' As early as 1321 the states-general protested against the selling of the royal domain. The advice of the estates assembled at Blois in 1576 having been asked by Henry III upon a proposal to sell territory in order to obtain means to carry on a war, the nobles and clergy consented, but the tiers état objected, and the sale does not appear to have been made.' An internal disposition of the royal domain was, however, a different thing from a cession by international treaty, and the admission of a restraint in the former case did not necessarily imply a check on the royal prerogative in the latter. The parlement of Paris was called upon at various times to register treaties-in 1480, to register the treaty of October 9, 1478, with Spain; in 1483, the treaty with Maximilian signed at Arras, December 25, 1482. It is recorded that in the latter case the court deliberated upon the different clauses. Several treaties were registered during the reigns of Charles VIII and Louis XII. It was expressly stipulated in the treaty of the Pyrenees of November 7, 1659, that for greater security, it should be published, ratified and registered in the court of the parlement of Paris, and in all other parlements of France, as also in the

Stubbs, Constitutional History of England, vol. iii, p. 89. Picot, Histoire des Etats Généraux, vol. I, pp. 284-6.

'Picot, vol. i, pp. 29, 339-41; Martin, vol. ix, p. 460; Kitchen, vol. ii, pp. 373-4.

Aubert, Histoire du Parlement de Paris, vol. I, p. 352. Ibid., p. 353.

chamber of accounts.' Similar articles are found in the important treaties signed at Aix la Chapelle, May 2, 1668, with Spain ;' at Nimeguen, September 17, 1678, with Spain ;3 and at Ryswick, September 20, 1697, with the United Provinces and with Spain. The action of the compliant parlement in this particular, however, could hardly insure it any recognition as a distinct organ in treaty-making.

The principal discussions as to treaty-making, in the Constituent Assembly that framed the constitution of 1791, occurred, May 16-23, 1790, on the question whether the nation ought to delegate to the king the exercise of the power of peace and of war. The lamentable treaties of Louis XV, by which France had been stripped of her colonial possessions, were quite naturally associated by some with the unrestrained power of the king in treatymaking. Numerous measures differing much in their nature were introduced. On May 16 a project was submitted by le curé Jallet providing that the king should not enter into negotiations for peace or alliances without the consent of the assembly. A project submitted the following day by M. de Villeneuve assigned to the king the power of proposing conditions of peace and projects of treaties, but always subject to the modification and approval of the legislative body.8 It was contended in the course of debate that the king should be given the power to conclude treaties of peace-by le comte Sérent, without restriction ;' by le comte

"Art. CXXIV.

2 Art. IX.

8 Art. XXXI. * Articles XXII and XLV of the treaties with the United Provinces, and Art. XXXVII of treaty with Spain. Collection of Treatys, vol. i. pp. 97, 160, 232, 316, 331, 345. 6 Le Moniteur, p. 554 et seq.

6 Ibid., p. 557, col. 2. ? Ibid., p. 555, col. 2. 8 Ibid., p. 558, col. 1. ' Ibid., p. 554, col. 2.

Galissonnière, on the authority of a responsible minister;' by various others, with the qualification that treaties providing for the furnishing of subsidies or for the cession of the territory or property of the nation should require legislative sanction. With the treaty clause as with many other sections of the constitution of 1791, it was Mirabeau's project that was finally adopted as the basis of the constitutional provision. According to his project, as introduced May 20, and later adopted by the Assembly, it appertained to the executive to arrange and sign with foreign powers all conventions which he should judge necessary for the welfare of the state, but treaties of peace, of alliance, and of commerce, were not to be executed until ratified by the legislative body. On May 24, subsequently to the adoption of this project, the wording was, at the suggestion of Mirabeau and with the unanimous consent of the Assembly, so changed as to require legislative approval for all treaties.3 By the constitution of 1793 treaties were to be negotiated by the Executive Council, composed of twenty-four members chosen by the national legislature from the candidates nominated by department electoral assemblies, and were to be ratified by the national legislature. The constitution of 1795 committed to the Directory the negotiating and signing of treaties, but all treaties before they could become valid were to be examined and ratified by the legislative body. Secret articles might be arranged, and might receive a provisional execution independent of the legislature, but such articles must

'Le Moniteur, p. 570, col. 1.

* Ibid., p. 572, col. 3. "Ibid., p. 589, col. 2. Title III, ch. 4, sec. 3, Art. III, and title III, ch. 3, sec. 1, Arts. II and III of the constitution. See for text, Dalloz's Répertoire de Jurisprudence, vol. xviii, pp. 291, 293.

• Arts. LXX and LV. Text, ibid., p. 299.

not be destructive of the open stipulations, or provide for an alienation of territory.' In the constitution of 1799, it was provided that the government, i. e., the three Consuls, should conduct the negotiations, make the preliminary stipulations, sign, have signed, and conclude all treaties of peace, alliance, neutrality, and commerce, and other treaties. Treaties of peace, alliance and commerce should be proposed, discussed, decreed, and promulgated as laws. The government could, however, demand secrecy. The natural inference from the specific enumeration in the two articles, the one immediately following the other, is that treaties other than those of peace, alliance and commerce, were to be consummated on executive authority. The constitution in the form of a sénatus-consulte of August 4, 1802, gave to the First Consul the power to ratify treaties of peace and alliance, after having taken the advice of the Privy Council. Before promulgation he was to inform the Senate.3 No reference was made to treaties other than those of peace and alliance, but the designation doubtless seemed sufficiently comprehensive at the time. From the organic law of May 18, 1804, accompanying the declaration of the Empire," until the constitution of 1848 the power to make treaties was vested solely in the Executive. The charters of 1814 and 1830 both provided, however, for a responsible ministry.

During this period the question mooted in the United States, of the function of the legislature in the execution of treaties that stipulate for changes in the revenue laws

"Arts. CCCXXX, CCCXXXI, CCCXXXIII. Ibid., p. 310.
? Arts. XLIX and L. Ibid., p. 313.
8 Art. LVIII. Ibid., p. 318.

Ibid., p. 318. • Art. XIV of the constitutional charter of 1814; Art. XIII constitutional charter of 1830. Ibid., pp. 326, 333.

or for appropriations, was the subject of discussion. The charters specifically provided that no impost should be levied or collected unless consented to by the two chambers and sanctioned by the king,' and that all propositions for imposts were to be first considered in the Chamber of Deputies.On February 8, 1826, an ordinance was issued for the full execution of a convention with Great Britain for the abolition of discriminating duties, signed January 26, 1826.3 In April following, while the general tariff law was undergoing revision in the Chamber of Deputies, an amendment was introduced giving to the ordinance of February 8 the sanction of a law. All seemed to be agreed that the treaty was advantageous to France; indeed, M. Casimir Périer, who proposed the amendment, expressly stated that he entirely approved its stipulations. The discussion was confined to the constitutional question, whether the king could by means of a treaty modify the revenue laws. The Deputies by a vote of 183 to 145 insisted upon a legislative execution.s

The convention with the United States of July 4, 1831, provided for the payment of 25,000,000 francs in six annual installments in settlement of claims against the French government. The first installment fell due February 2, 1833, but no provision had been made for its payment, nor had the government asked the chambers for an appropriation. In the April following a bill was introduced into the Chamber of Deputies authorizing the Minister of Finance to take measures for the execution of the treaty, but it was not pressed to a vote until a

· Arts. XLVIII and XL.

* Arts. XVII and XV. • Hertslet's Commercial Treaties, vol. iii, pp. 123, 134. 'Le Moniteur, p. 548, col. 3. Ibid., p. 555, col. 3.

« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »