The Enabling Act Ermächtigungsgesetz of 23 March 1933 as catalyst for building the Führer State in Germany
The aim of the article is to analyze the origins and political repercussions of the Enabling Act formally known as the “law to remedy the distress of the people and the nation” of 23 March 1933. Combined with the previously passed Reichstag Fire Decree 28 February 1933, which abolished most constitutional civil liberties and transferred state rights to the central government, the act enabled Chancellor Adolf Hitler to assume dictatorial powers in the near future. Deputies from the Nazi Party, the German National People’s Party, and the Centre Party voted in favour of the act that allowed Hitler’s cabinet to pass laws without the consent or any involvement of the Reichstag parliament and the presidency. In effect it gave Hitler’s dictatorship an appearance of legality and a solid political base from which to carry out the first steps of his “national revolution” in order to seize unlimited power over every aspect of life in Germany. It was the dawn of the totalitarian regime of the Third Reich.