The Downfall of M. Chautemps On Friday, February 21st, M.
Chautemps formed the new French Ministry. The President, M. Doumergue, had naturally turned first to him because it was he, at the head of the Radical-Socialists, who had done most to bring down M. Tardieu. M. Briand remained Minister for Foreign Affairs, but it is unnecessary to discuss the personnel of the Ministry, as it lasted for only four days. In France such a brief span of office does not imply extensive confusion as it would in Great Britain where a dissolution is the logical sequel to obvious political insta- bility. The present damage is done, not to politics in France, but to the Naval Conference in London. On Tuesday M. Chautemps invited the Chamber to give him a vote of confidence, but he was defeated by a majority of fifteen, and the Cabinet at once resigned. If he had been able to gain the adherence of the Central groups, as he at first tried to do, the story of his Administration might have been very different ; but the character and mood of the majority of the Chamber being what it is the downfall of M. Tardieu seems more than ever to have been a useless interruption of the determined flow of French political purpose.