Federal Chancellor of Switzerland
|Federal Chancellor of Switzerland
(French) Chancelier(-ière) fédéral(e)
(Italian) Cancelliere(-a) della Confederazione
(Romansh) Chancelier(a) federal(a)
|Term length||Four years, renewable|
|Inaugural holder||Jean-Marc Mousson|
|This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
The Federal Chancellor (German: Bundeskanzler(in); French: Chancelier(-ière) fédéral(e); Italian: Cancelliere(-a) della Confederazione; Romansh: Chancelier(a) federal(a)) is the head of the Federal Chancellery of Switzerland, which acts as the general staff of the seven-member Federal Council. The Swiss Chancellor is not a member of the government, and his or her position is not comparable to that of the Chancellor of Germany or Austria.
The Federal Chancellor is elected for a four-year term by the Federal Assembly, assembled together as the United Federal Assembly, at the same time as they elect the Federal Council. The current Chancellor, Walter Thurnherr, a member of the Christian Democratic People's Party from Aargau, was elected on 9 December 2015 and began his term on 1 January 2016.
Although the chancellor only has a technocratic role, the position is a political appointment made by a vote of both houses of the Federal Assembly, sitting together as the United Federal Assembly, for a term of four years.
One or two Vice-Chancellors (before 1852 this position was called the State Secretary of the Confederation) are also appointed; in contrast to the chancellor, their appointment is made directly by the Federal Council.
The chancellor's role
The chancellor attends meetings of the Federal Council (although he or she does not have a vote), and prepares the Federal Council's reports to the Federal Assembly on its policy and activities. Nonetheless, his or her influential position is often referred to as that of an 'eighth Federal Councillor'. The chancellery is also responsible for the publication of all federal laws.
List of Federal Chancellors
- Politics of Switzerland
- List of Presidents of the Swiss Confederation
- List of members of the Swiss Federal Council
- Lists of office-holders
Notes and references
- Federal Chancellor of Switzerland in German, French and Italian in the online Historical Dictionary of Switzerland.
- Hans-Urs Willi. "The Chancellor: a few historical highlights on the development of their person and the office from ancient times to the Middle Ages and the Zenden Republic of Valais". In Klaus, Michel (editor): Quelle chance pour nos institutions? Mélanges offerts à Monsieur François Couchepin, chancelier de la Confédération à l'occasion de son 60e anniversaire / Festschrift für Bundeskanzler François Couchepin zum 60. Geburtstag. Schlieren 1995. Translated by Paul Suffrin and Elsbeth Hagan.