CDU/CSU Coalition Fall Short of Majority

Sept. 26, 2013, 12:05 p.m.

Germany (September 22, 2013): German voters participated in Parliamentary elections on September 22, 2013, to elect members to the lower house of Parliament, the Bundestag. In the Bundestag, 299 members are elected by plurality vote in single-member districts, and another 299 members are elected through proportional representation, with the possibility of additional compensatory seats being added to ensure that the party’s seat share is proportional to its Land-wide vote share. In order to qualify for seats in the Bundestag parties must receive 5 percent of the vote nation-wide. The alliance between the Democratic Union of Germany / Christlich Demokratische Union Deutschlands (CDU) and the Chrisitan Social Union of Bavaria / Christlich-Soziale Union in Bayern (CSU) won the most seats in the election, gaining 311 seats in the new Bundestag after receiving combined 18,157,256 party-list votes (41.64 percent), representing the highest vote total the alliance had received since the 1994 federal elections. Due to the addition of compensatory seats, the CDU and CSU fell short of an absolute majority in the Bundestag. Previously the CDU and CSU had ruled in coalition with the Free Democratic Party / Freie Demokratische Partei (FDP). However, the FDP only received 2,082,305 votes (4.76 percent) in the election, thus falling short of the 5 percent threshold for representation.

Receiving the second most votes in the election was the Social Democratic Party of Germany / Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands (SPD), which received 11,247,283 votes (25.74 percent) in the election, and will have 192 seats in the new Bundestag. Also gaining seats in the new Bundestag are The Left / Die Linke, which will have 64 seats after gaining 3,752,577 votes (8.59 percent) and the Alliance ’90 – The Greens / Bündnis 90 – Die Grünen which will have 63 seats after winning 3,690,314 votes (8.44 percent). In the election, 44,289,652 Germans (71.5 percent) of voters cast their ballots.

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