Soviet Union: Notes - Archontology

Soviet Union: Notes

Transition from the Central Executive Committee to the Supreme Soviet (1938)

On 5 Dec 1936, the Congress of Soviets of the USSR passed the second Soviet constitution (the "Stalin Constitution"). Under new provisions, the All-Union Congress of Soviets (Всесоюзный Съезд Советов) and the Central Executive Committee (Центральный Исполнительный Комитет СССР) were replaced by the Supreme Soviet (Верховный Совет СССР), a nominally new body, that exercised the legislative power.

The authority Central Executive Committee in theory expired on 12 Jan 1938, the day when the new Soviet parliament, Supreme Soviet, held its first meetings in Moscow. On that day, two chambers of the Supreme Soviet, the Soviet of the Union and the Soviet of Nationalities, held separate meetings and elected their chairmen - Andrej Andreev (chairman of the Council of Union: 12 Jan 1938 - 10 Feb 1946) and Nikolaj Švernik (chairman of the Council of Nationalities: 12 Jan 1938 - 10 Feb 1946). By 17 Jan 1938 the two chambers formed new parliamentary committees and gathered at the joint session to elect the collective presidency, Presidium of the Supreme Soviet, and its chairman. Deputy Stanislav Kosior proposed to name Mihail Kalinin the chairman and the Supreme Soviet approved it by acclamation (17 Jan 1938).

[1]  Известия, 1938, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18 января.