„100 YEARS OF THE FREE STATE OF BAVARIA“
„200 YEARS OF THE CONSTITUTION OF THE KINGDOM OF BAVARIA“
“King Maximilian I Joseph of Bavaria created one of the most liberal constitutions of his time with the Constitution of the Kingdom of Bavaria. He therefore became the pioneer of the modern constitutional state that Bavaria is today,” said Landtag President Barbara Stamm on Wednesday (27 June) on the occasion of the presentation of the commemorative medal “100 Years of the Free State of Bavaria and 200 Years of the Constitution of the Kingdom of Bavaria” in the Bavarian Landtag. on the occasion of the presentation of the commemorative medal “100 Years of the Free State of Bavaria and 200 Years of the Constitution of the Kingdom of Bavaria” in the Bavarian Landtag. “The proclamation of the Free State of Bavaria by Kurt Eisner 100 years later was another important event in Bavaria’s history,” added Albert Füracker, Minister for Finance and Home Affairs.
The Bavarian anniversary year of 2018 will be celebrated with a special commemorative medal. The medal consists of a fine silver ring, a gold-plated fine silver core and a blue polymer ring in between them. The front is dedicated to the Free State and shows the Bavarian coat of arms. The front is dedicated to the Free State and shows the Bavarian coat of arms. On the back, the Bavarian Landtag (state parliament) is depicted as a symbol for the first Bavarian constitution. The medal was designed by Nuremberg artist Patrick Niesel. 1,000 commemorative medals have been produced. Distribution is carried out exclusively via the Bavarian State Mint. Distribution is carried out exclusively via the Bavarian State Mint.
On 26 May 1818, Maximilian I Joseph of Bavaria enacted a constitution which was valid until the end of the kingdom in 1918. The power of the king in the constitutional monarchy was limited by the Ständeversammlung (Estates Assembly), which consisted of two chambers which influenced legislation and tax approval. The constitution also granted equality before the law, freedom of religion, extended freedom of expression and access to state offices according to ability rather than social status. The second chamber of the Bavarian Ständeversammlung, the Chamber of Representatives, was the forerunner for today’s Bavarian Landtag.
100 years later, Kurt Eisner proclaimed the Free State of Bavaria in the night from 7 to 8 November 1918, thus ending the House of Wittelsbach rule. Eisner was elected the first minister president of the new Bavarian Republic by the Munich Workers’ and Soldiers’ Council. Among other things, Eisner introduced women’s suffrage and the eight-hour working day. The Bamberg Constitution of 1919 completed the transition from the kingdom to the Free State of Bavaria. The protection of fundamental rights was further strengthened in the Bavarian Constitution of 1946. The improved proportional representation system was introduced for the first time, according to which half of the seats in the Landtag are allocated to constituencies based on the majority voting system and the other half based on the proportional representation system through the lists of parties in the constituencies which were the same as the administrative districts.
Since then, the Bavarian Constitution has undergone various changes, such as the lowering of the voting age (1970), the reduction of the blocking clause for smaller parties from 10 to 5 percent (1973) and the introduction of public petitions and referendums (1995). “Today we can look back with pride on an eventful constitutional history in Bavaria, which has produced a strong and fortified democracy and is therefore well-prepared for the challenges of the future,” agreed Stamm and Füracker.
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(Source: Bavarian State Ministry of Finance, State Development and Home Affairs)