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Chancellor of Cygnia (Game of Nations)

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Chancellor of the
Empire of the United Cygnian States
Seal of the Chancellor of Cygnia
Cancellarial Seal
Christian Lindner 2013 (cropped)
Dorian Brandt

since 6 February 2014
Style The Right Honourable (official)
Mr/Madam Chancellor (informal)
His/Her Excellency (diplomatic)
Residence The Chancellery
8 William Street
Swanstone, SW 1005
Appointer The Emperor
Term length Four years
Inaugural holder Sir Frederick Northam
Formation 6 June 1792
224 years ago
Deputy Vice Chancellor
Salary §400,000 annually

The Chancellor of the Empire of the United Cygnian States is the elected head of government of Cygnia. The Chancellor leads on behalf of the Emperor the executive branch of the Cygnian Government.

Article II of the Cygnian Imperial Constitution vests the executive power of Cygnia in the Emperor, though it is officially "at His Majesty's discretion" relegated to the Chancellor. This power includes execution of Imperial law, alongside the responsibility of appointing federal executive, diplomatic, regulatory and judicial officers, and concluding treaties with foreign powers with the advice and consent of the Senate and the Emperor. The Chancellor is further empowered to grant federal pardons and reprieves, and to convene and adjourn either or both houses of Congress under extraordinary circumstances. The Chancellor is largely responsible for dictating the legislative agenda of the party to which the Chancellor is enrolled. The Chancellor also directs Cygnian foreign and domestic policy.

The Chancellor is directly elected by the adult population to a four-year term, and is one of only two nationally elected federal officers, the other being the Vice Chancellor. In all, 28 individuals have served as Chancellor, including Franklin J. Heller, who was Chancellor during the Democratic Republic of Cygnia. One Chancellor, Charles Wallace, served two separate Chancelleries, and was the 8th and 10th Chancellors. The Government does not officially recognise Heller's Chancellery, and thus claims the completion thus far of 47 full four-year terms by 27 individuals. On 6 June 2014, Dorian Brandt became the 29th and current Chancellor, and is currently serving the 48th official term. The next cancellarial election is to take place in late 2018; the newly-elected Chancellor will then take office on 6 February 2019.


In 1810, Alexander I, King of the United Kingdom, fled to Cygnia following his deposition by his French subjects and the establishment of the new Roman Empire. He thereafter declared the six Cygnian colonies' Federation crowning himself King of Cygnia, while maintaining his existing titles as sovereign of the United Kingdom and its colonies, though the United Kingdom itself no longer existed. In creating a new Cygnian royal government, the King created the office of Chancellor of Cygnia, appointing former Swanstone Governor Frederick Northam to the role.

By 1792, King Alexander I had lost hope of regaining his lands in Europe, and thus elevated himself to Imperial status, and the Kingdom of Cygnia to that of an Empire. He formally declared Cygnia's independence from the United Kingdom; this was peacefully accepted by the Roman government in Paris in the 1792 Treaty of Paris. A Constitutional Convention was convened shortly after to draft the new Imperial Constitution. Following the ratification of the new Constitution by all six States in 1813, the Constitution came into effect in March.

Under this new constitution, the Chancellor became the head of Alexander I's new Imperial Government, and was to be appointed by the newly formed Imperial Congress, specifically by the nobles in the Senate. By today's standards highly conservative, the method of the Chancellor's appointment was gradually revised through Constitutional Amendments, which also abolished a peerage-based Senate and introduced a fully elected body as in the National Assembly. The Third Amendment which made this change also provided for a directly elected Chancellor, and it was then that the Chancellery framed in the current Cygnian Constitution emerged.

Powers and duties

Article I legislative role

The first power the Constitution confers upon the Chancellor is the veto. The Presentment Clause requires any bill passed by Congress to be presented to the Chancellor and the Emperor before it can become law. Once the legislation has been presented to the Chancellor, he or she has two options:

  1. Sign the legislation; the bill then is presented to the Emperor.
  2. Veto the legislation and return it to Congress, expressing any objections; the bill does not become law, unless each house of Congress votes to override the veto by a two-thirds vote. If the veto is overridden, the bill is presented to the Emperor for consideration and Imperial assent.

The Chancellor has two working weeks to come to a decision. If he or she takes no action, it automatically passes to the Emperor for consideration.

Article II executive powers

War and foreign affairs powers

Perhaps the most important of all Cancellarial powers is the delegated command of the Cygnian Imperial Armed Forces, though s/he is not technically its commander-in-chief — that title is vested in the Emperor. While the power to declare war is constitutionally vested in Congress, the Chancellor has ultimate responsibility for direction and disposition of the military. The present-day operational command of the Armed Forces (belonging to the Imperial Secretariat for Defence) is normally exercised through the Imperial Secretary for Defence, with assistance of the Chairman of Unified Defence Command, to the Combatant Commands, as outlined in the cancellarially approved Unified Command Plan (UCP).

Congress and the Emperor, pursuant to War Powers Act, must authorise any troop deployments longer than 60 days, although that process relies on triggering mechanisms that have never been employed, rendering it ineffectual. Additionally, Congress provides a check to Cancellarial military power through its control over military spending and regulation.

Along with the armed forces, the Chancellor also directs Cygnian foreign policy. Through the Imperial Secretariat for Foreign Affairs and International Relations and the Imperial Secretariat for Defence, the Chancellor is responsible for the protection of Cygnians abroad and of foreign nationals in Cygnia. The Chancellor decides whether to recognise new nations and new governments, and negotiates treaties with other nations. which become binding on Cygnia when approved by two-thirds vote of the Senate. These same abilities are also vested in the Emperor.

Although not constitutionally provided, Chancellors also sometimes employ "executive agreements" in foreign relations. These agreements frequently regard administrative policy choices germane to executive power; for example, the extent to which either country presents an armed presence in a given area, how each country will enforce copyright treaties, or how each country will process foreign mail. However, the 20th century witnessed a vast expansion of the use of executive agreements, and critics have challenged the extent of that use as supplanting the treaty process and removing constitutionally prescribed checks and balances over the executive in foreign relations. Supporters counter that the agreements offer a pragmatic solution when the need for swift, secret, and/or concerted action arises.

Administrative powers

Judicial powers

Legislative facilitator

Ceremonial roles

Selection process


Article II, Section 3, Clause 3 of the Imperial Constitution sets that the Chancellor must be:

  • At least thirty years old;
  • A Cygnian citizen, and by extension a resident for at least fifteen years.

A person who meets the above qualifications is still disqualified from holding the Chancellorship under any of the following conditions:

  • An individual convicted in an impeachment case can be disqualified from holding federal office, including that of Chancellor, by the Senate.
  • A Chancellor who has left office is disqualified from re-election, though re-election to consecutive terms is still permitted.


Since 1983, the Chancellor has earned a §400,000 annual salary, along with a §50,000 annual expense account, a §100,000 nontaxable travel account, and §19,000 for entertainment. The most recent raise in salary was approved by Congress, Chancellor Martin O. Scott and Emperor Ellory I in 1981, and went into effect upon the inauguration of Joanne Seinfeld in 1983.

The Chancellery in Swanstone serves as the official residence for the Chancellor. As well as access to the staff of the Chancellery, facilities available to the Chancellor include medical care, recreation, housekeeping, and security services. The government pays for state dinners and other official functions, but the Chancellor pays for person, family and guest drycleaning and food; the high food bill often amazes new residents. Northam House in Cape Leeuwin, Augusta, is used as a country retreat and an alternative residence for the Chancellor if needed.

For ground travel, the Chancellor uses the Cancellarial state car, which is an armoured limousine built on a heavily modified Holden-based chassis. One of two identical Douglas Madison Royce MAC-30 aircraft, which are extensively modified version of DMR-18-800 airliners, have since 2015 served as long distance travel for the Chancellor and are referred to as Cygnia Two while the Chancellor is on board (although any Cygnian Imperial Air Force aircraft the Chancellor is aboard is designated as "Cygnia Two" for the duration of the flight). Domestic trips are typically handled with just one of the two planes while international flights are handled with both, one primary and one backup. Any civilian aircraft the Chancellor is aboard is designated Executive Two for the flight. The Chancellor also has access to a fleet of twenty Cygnian Imperial Marine Corps helicopters of various models, designated as Marine Two when the Chancellor is aboard any particular one in the fleet. Flights are typically handled with as many as five helicopters all flying together and frequently swapping positions as to disguise which helicopter the Chancellor is actually aboard to any would-be threats.

MIB Gamma is charged with protecting the sitting Chancellor and his/her family. As part of their protection, Chancellors, their spouses, their children and other immediate family members, and other prominent persons and locations are assigned MIBG codenames. The use of such names was originally for security purposes and dates to a time when sensitive electronic communications were not routinely encrypted; today, the names simply serve for purposes of brevity, clarity, and tradition.


Beginning in 1963, all living former Chancellors were granted a pension, an office, and a staff. The pension has increased numerous times with Congressional approval. Retired Chancellors now receive a pension based on the salary of the current administration's Imperial Secretaries, which was §200,000 per annum in 2016. Former Chancellors who previously served in Congress may also collect Congressional pensions. The Former Chancellors Act, as amended, also provides former Chancellors with travel funds and franking privileges. Prior to 1997, all former Chancellors, their spouses, and their children until age 16 were protected by MIBG until the Chancellor's death. In 1997, Congress passed legislation limiting MIBG protection to no more than 10 years from the date a Chancellor leaves office. On 8 February 2013, Chancellor Thomas F. Holt signed legislation reinstanting lifetime MIBG protection for him, Reginald Suhartono, and all subsequent Chancellors. A spouse who remarries is no longer eligible for MIBG protection.

Some Chancellors have had significant careers after leaving office. A prominent example includes Calvin Althorpe's tenure as Chief Justice of Cygnia. Charles Wallace, whose bid for re-election failed in 1864, was elected Chancellor again four years later in 1868. Two former Chancellors served in Congress after leaving the Chancellery: Hunter Alston was elected to the National Assembly, serving there for eighteen years before retiring due to ill health. A more recent example is Joanne Seinfeld, who was elected to the Senate in 2006; she is still a Senator serving for the state of Augusta.

Chancellors may use their predecessors as emissaries to deliver private messages to other nations or as official representatives of Cygnia to state funerals and other important foreign events. Joanne Seinfeld, in between leaving the Chancellery and her election to the Senate, made multiple foreign trips to countries including Han and Teuton and was lauded as an elder stateswoman. Martin O. Scott has become a global human rights campaigner, international arbiter, and election monitor, as well as a recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Reginald Suhartono has also worked as an informal ambassador. Suhartono has also been active politically since his cancellarial term ended, and was elected to the Samudra Legislative Assembly in 2009. He currently serves as the Speaker of the Samudra Legislative Assembly.

Living former Chancellors pictured, in order of service. Below from left: Jonathan Behrens, Martin O. Scott, Dame Joanne Seinfeld, Reginald Suhartono, and Thomas F. Holt.

Oath of office

The Oath of Office of the Chancellor of Cygnia is the oath or affirmation that the Chancellor takes after assuming the Chancellorship but before he or she begins the execution of the office. The wording is specified in Article II, Section 3, Clause 6 of the Imperial Constitution. It is administered during the inauguration ceremony by the Chief Justice and in the presence of the Emperor.

I, [name], do solemnly swear/affirm that I will well and truly serve His/Her Imperial Majesty [name of monarch], His/Her heirs and successors according to law, in the office of Chancellor of the Empire of the United Cygnian States. I will to the best of my ability serve, protect and defend the Constitution of the Empire, and I will do right to all manner of people after the laws and usages of the Empire, without fear or favour, affection or ill will. (So help me God!)

List of Chancellors

     Nonpartisan      Federalist      Liberal-Democratic      United Cygnia
     Democratic Labour      National Unity      NCSP
# Portrait Name
Term of Office Political Party Emperor
Took Office Left Office
1 Frederick Northam
6 June 1792 6 February 1805 Nonpartisan Alexander I
2 John Forrest Harold Symons
6 February 1805 6 February 1813 Federalist
Theodore I
3 John Keating
6 February 1813 6 February 1821 United Cygnia
4 Carl Oregon
6 February 1821 6 February 1825 Federalist Alexander II
5 Isaac Isaacs
6 February 1825 6 February 1833 United Cygnia
6 Georgereid Jeremy Blaimey
6 February 1833 6 February 1837 United Cygnia
7 Calvin Althorpe
6 February 1837 6 February 1845 United Cygnia
Theodore II
8 James Kilburn
6 February 1845 6 February 1853 Federalist
9 Robert Bridges Harrison Redford
6 February 1853 8 August 1854
Died in office
10 Hunter Alston
8 August 1854 6 February 1861 Liberal-Democratic
11 Charles Wallace
6 February 1861 6 February 1865 United Cygnia
12 Richard R. Renault
6 February 1865 6 February 1869 Democratic Labour
13 Charles Wallace
6 February 1869 6 February 1873 National Unity
14 Humphrey Langley
6 February 1873 6 February 1877 National Unity
15 Henry G. Tyler
6 February 1877 6 February 1885 Democratic Labour
16 Alistair MacTaggart
6 February 1885 6 February 1889 National Unity Theodore III
17 Tobias Clausewitz
6 February 1889 6 February 1893 Democratic Labour
18 Joshua Darius
6 February 1893 6 February 1897 National Unity
19 Robert Fynch
6 February 1897 6 February 1901 Democratic Labour
20 Anthony Tabot
6 February 1901 6 February 1905 National Unity
21 Felix Colgan
6 February 1905 6 February 1913 Democratic Labour
22 Christian Heinemann
6 February 1913 6 February 1917 Democratic Labour
23 Benjamin Patterson
6 February 1913 9 October 1923
Died in office
National Unity
24 Wesley Orwell
9 October 1923 2 June 1933 National Unity
Theodore IV
FJHeller-CYG-GoN Franklin J. Heller
2 June 1933 8 April 1943 NCSP None
25 Bundesarchiv Bild Helmut Schmidt 1975 cropped Derrick Mayweather
5 May 1946 6 February 1959 Non-partisan Ellory I
26 Otto Humphrey
6 February 1959 6 February 1967 Democratic Labour
27 Jonathan Behrens
(born 1932)
6 February 1967 6 February 1971 National Unity
28 Martin O. Scott
(born 1930)
6 February 1971 6 February 1983 National Unity
29 Margaret Thatcher (1983) Joanne Seinfeld
(born 1946)
6 February 1983 6 February 1999 Democratic Labour
Ellory I

Theodore V

30 Yudhoyono Reginald Suhartono
(born 1956)
6 February 1999 6 February 2007 National Unity Theodore V
31 Bill Shorten-crop Thomas F. Holt
(born 1963)
6 February 2007 6 February 2015 Democratic Labour
32 Christian Lindner 2013 (cropped) Dorian Brandt
(born 1976)
6 February 2015 Incumbent Democratic Labour

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