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Encyclopedia > Politics of Germany
Germany

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Politics and government of
Germany
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Politics of Germany takes place in a framework of a federal parliamentary representative democratic republic, whereby the Federal Chancellor is the head of government, and of a plurality multi-party system. Executive power is exercised by the government. Federal legislative power is vested in both the government and the two chambers of parliament, Bundestag and Bundesrat. Since 1949, the party system has been dominated by the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD). This article is about the human rights situation in the Federal Republic of Germany. ... The Federal Convention (Bundesversammlung) is a special body in the institutional system of Germany, convoked only for the purpose of selecting the Bundespräsident every five years. ... The Bundesrat (federal council) is the representation of the 16 Federal States (Länder) of Germany at the federal level. ... Type Lower house President of the Bundestag Dr. Norbert Lammert, CDU since October 18, 2005 Members 614 Political groups Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union of Bavaria Bloc (226) Social Democratic Party of Germany (222) Free Democratic Party (61) The Left. ... The Bundesverfassungsgericht The Federal Constitutional Court (in German: Bundesverfassungsgericht, BVerfG) is a special court established by the German constitutional document, the Grundgesetz (Basic Law). ... The Bundesgerichtshof or BGH (German for federal court) is the highest Germany for civil and criminal lawsuits. ... The President of Germany is Germanys head of state. ... Horst Köhler ( , born 22 February 1943) is the current President of Germany. ... The head of government of Germany is called Chancellor (German: Kanzler). ...   (IPA: ) (born Angela Dorothea Kasner, 17 July 1954, in Hamburg, Germany), is the Chancellor of Germany. ... The Cabinet of Germany (German: Bundeskabinett, Bundesregierung) is the chief executive body of the Federal Republic of Germany. ... Germany is a Federal Republic made up of 16 States, known in German as Länder (singular Land). ... There are 439 German districts (Kreise), administrative units in Germany. ... Elections in Germany gives information on election and election results in Germany, including elections to the Federal Diet (the lower house of the federal parliament), the Landtage of the various states, and local elections. ... This is a list of political parties in Germany. ... The Federal Republic of Germany is a Central European country and member of the European Union, Group of 8 and NATO (among others). ... The European Union or EU is a supranational and international organization of 27 member states. ... Information on politics by country is available for every country, including both de jure and de facto independent states, inhabited dependent territories, as well as areas of special sovereignty. ... A map displaying todays federations. ... A parliamentary system, or parliamentarism, is distinguished by the executive branch of government being dependent on the direct or indirect support of the parliament, often expressed through a vote of confidence. ... Representative democracy is a form of government founded on the principles of popular sovereignty by the peoples representatives. ... Look up republic in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... The head of government of Germany is called Chancellor (German: Kanzler). ... The head of government is the chief officer of the executive branch of a government, often presiding over a cabinet. ... Under the doctrine of the separation of powers, the executive is the branch of a government charged with implementing, or executing, the law. ... A legislature is a governmental deliberative body with the power to adopt laws. ... The Bundestag (Federal Diet) is the parliament of Germany. ... The Bundesrat (federal council) is the representation of the 16 Federal States (Länder) of Germany at the federal level. ... The Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU — Christlich Demokratische Union Deutschlands) is the second largest political party in Germany. ... SPD redirects here. ...


The Judiciary of Germany is independent of the executive and the legislature. The political system is laid out in the 1949 constitution, the Grundgesetz (Basic Law), which remained in effect with minor amendments after 1990's German reunification. The judiciarys independence and extensive responsibilities reflect the importance of the rule of law in the German system of government. ... Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany The Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany (German: Grundgesetz für die Bundesrepublik Deutschland) is the constitution[1] of Germany. ... This article is about the 1990 German reunification. ...


The constitution emphasizes the protection of individual liberty in an extensive catalogue of human rights and also divides powers both between the federal and state levels and between the legislative, executive, and judicial branches. In many ways, the 1949 Grundgesetz is a strong response to the perceived flaws of the failed 1919 Weimar Republic, which, in 1933, was replaced by the legal power gain of Hitler and the Third Reich. Anthem Das Lied der Deutschen Germany during the Weimar period, with the Free State of Prussia (in blue) as the largest state Capital Berlin Language(s) German Government Republic President  - 1918-1925 Friedrich Ebert  - 1925-1933 Paul von Hindenburg Chancellor  - 1919 Philipp Scheidemann(first)  - 1933 Kurt von Schleicher (last) Legislature... Nazi Germany, or the Third Reich, commonly refers to Germany in the years 1933–1945, when it was under the firm control of the totalitarian and fascist ideology of the Nazi Party, with the Führer Adolf Hitler as dictator. ...

Contents

Federal executive branch

The Bundeskanzler (Federal Chancellor) heads the Bundesregierung (Federal Cabinet) and thus the executive branch of the federal government. He or she is elected by and responsible to the Bundestag, Germany's parliament. Germany, like the United Kingdom, can thus be classified as a parliamentary system. The head of government of Germany is called Chancellor (German: Kanzler). ... The Cabinet of Germany (German: Bundeskabinett, Bundesregierung) is the chief executive body of the Federal Republic of Germany. ... The executive is the branch of a government charged with implementing, or executing, the law and running the day-to-day affairs of the government or state. ... Type Lower house President of the Bundestag Dr. Norbert Lammert, CDU since October 18, 2005 Members 614 Political groups Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union of Bavaria Bloc (226) Social Democratic Party of Germany (222) Free Democratic Party (61) The Left. ... States currently utilizing parliamentary systems are denoted in red and orange—the former being constitutional monarchies where authority is vested in a parliament, the latter being parliamentary republics whose parliaments are effectively supreme over a separate head of state. ...


The Chancellor cannot be removed from office during a 4-year term unless the Bundestag has agreed on a successor. This Constructive Vote of No Confidence is intended to avoid the situation of the Weimar Republic in which the executive did not have enough support in the legislature to govern effectively, but the legislature was too divided to name a successor. The Constructive Vote of No Confidence (in German: konstruktives Misstrauensvotum) is a specialty of the 1949 German constitution, the Grundgesetz (Basic Law). ...


Except in the periods 1969–72 and 1976–82, when the social democratic party of Chancellor Brandt and Schmidt came in second in the elections, the Chancellor has always been the candidate of the largest party, usually supported by a coalition of two or more parties with a majority in the parliament. The Chancellor appoints a Vice-Chancellor (Vizekanzler), who is a member of his cabinet, usually the Foreign Minister. When there is a coalition government (which has, so far, always been the case, except for the period of 1957 to 1961), the Vice-Chancellor usually belongs to the smaller party of the coalition. The Deputy Chancellor or Vice-Chancellor (Vizekanzler) in Germany is often the Minister of Foreign Affairs. ... A coalition government, or coalition cabinet, is a cabinet in parliamentary government in which several parties cooperate. ...


The heads of governments may change the structure of ministries whenever and however they see fit. For example, in the middle of January 2001, the Federal Ministry of Agriculture was renamed to Ministry of Consumer Protection, Food and Agriculture as a consequence of the BSE crisis. For that measure, competences from the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Economy and the Ministry of Health were transferred to the new Ministry of Consumer Protection. Classic image of a cow with BSE. A notable feature of such disease is the inability (of the infected animal) to stand. ...


Subordinate to the cabinet is the Civil service of Germany.


By contrast, the duties of the Bundespräsident (Federal President) are largely representative and ceremonial; power is exercised by the Chancellor. The President is elected every 5 years on May 23 by the Federal Assembly (Bundesversammlung), a special body convened only for this purpose, comprising the entire Bundestag and an equal number of state delegates selected especially for this purpose in proportion to election results for the state diets. In May 2004, Horst Köhler of the CDU was elected. The reason that the President is not popularly elected is to prevent him from gaining enough popular legitimacy to circumvent the constitution, as occurred with the Weimar Republic. The President of Germany is Germanys head of state. ... is the 143rd day of the year (144th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... The Federal Convention (Bundesversammlung) is a special body in the institutional system of Germany, convoked only for the purpose of selecting the Bundespräsident every five years. ... Horst Köhler ( , born 22 February 1943) is the current President of Germany. ... The Christian Democratic Union (CDU - Christlich-Demokratische Union) is a political party in Germany. ...

Main office holders
Office Name Party Since
President Horst Köhler --- 1) 1 July 2004
Chancellor Angela Merkel CDU 22 November 2005
Other government parties SPD, CSU

1) Although Mr. Köhler has been a member of the CDU the German Basic Law requests in Article 55 that the Federal President does not hold another office, practice a profession or hold a membership of any corporation. Accordingly every Federal President has let his party membership rest dormant and does not belong to a political party during his term of office. The President of Germany is Germanys head of state. ... Horst Köhler ( , born 22 February 1943) is the current President of Germany. ... is the 182nd day of the year (183rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The head of government of Germany is called Chancellor (German: Kanzler). ...   (IPA: ) (born Angela Dorothea Kasner, 17 July 1954, in Hamburg, Germany), is the Chancellor of Germany. ... The Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU — Christlich Demokratische Union Deutschlands) is the second largest political party in Germany. ... is the 326th day of the year (327th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... SPD redirects here. ... The Christian Social Union in Bavaria (CSU – ) is a conservative political party in Germany. ...


Federal parliament

Reichstag, seat of the parliament, Berlin.

Germany has on the federal level a bicameral legislature. The parliament has two chambers. The Bundestag (Federal Diet) nominally has 598 members, elected for a four year term, 299 members elected in single-seat constituencies according to first-past-the-post, while a further 299 members are allocated from statewide party lists to achieve a proportional distribution in the legislature, conducted according to a system of mixed member proportional representation. Voters vote once for a constituency representative, and a second time for a party, and the lists are used to make the party balances match the distribution of second votes. In the current parliament there are 16 overhang seats, giving a total of 614. This is caused by larger parties winning additional single-member districts above the totals determined by their proportional party vote. A party must receive 5% of the national vote or win at least three directly elected seats to be represented in the Bundestag. This rule, often called the "five percent hurdle", was incorporated into Germany's election law to prevent political fragmentation and strong minor parties, which was considered a major reason for the inefficiency of the Weimar Republic's Reichstag. The first Bundestag elections were held in the Federal Republic of Germany ("West Germany") on August 14, 1949. Following reunification, elections for the first all-German Bundestag were held on December 2, 1990. The last election was held on September 18, 2005, the 16th Bundestag convened on October 18, 2005. The number of Bundestag Deputies was reduced from 656 to 598 beginning in 2002, although under the additional member system, more deputies may be admitted if a party wins more directly elected seats than it would be entitled to under proportional representation. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (2498x1093, 670 KB) de Beschreibung: Reichstagsgebäude in Berlin mit Wiese Quelle: selbst fotografiert von Johann H. Addicks Lizenz: unter PD gestellt von Johann H. Addicks Entstehungsdatum: Juni 2005 en Source: Taken by de:Benutzer:-jha- Date: June 2005 image moved... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (2498x1093, 670 KB) de Beschreibung: Reichstagsgebäude in Berlin mit Wiese Quelle: selbst fotografiert von Johann H. Addicks Lizenz: unter PD gestellt von Johann H. Addicks Entstehungsdatum: Juni 2005 en Source: Taken by de:Benutzer:-jha- Date: June 2005 image moved... The Reichstag building. ... This article is about bicameralism in government. ... A legislatureis a type of representative deliberative assembly with the power to ratify laws. ... A constituency is any cohesive corporate unit or body bound by shared structures, goals or loyalty. ... The First Past the Post electoral system, is a voting system for single-member districts. ... Mixed member proportional representation, also termed mixed-member proportional voting and commonly abbreviated to MMP, is a voting system used to elect representatives to numerous legislatures around the world. ... Overhang seats can arise in elections under mixed member proportional (MMP), when a party is entitled to fewer seats as a result of party votes than it has won constituencies. ... The Reichstag (German for Imperial Diet) was the parliament of the Holy Roman Empire, the North German Confederation, and of Germany until 1945. ... is the 226th day of the year (227th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1949 (MCMXLIX) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... The 34th German federal election, 1990 was conducted on December 2, 1990, to elect members to the Bundestag (lower house) of Germany. ... is the 336th day of the year (337th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... This article is about the year. ... German federal elections took place on September 18, 2005 to elect the members of the 16th German Bundestag, the federal parliament of Germany. ... is the 261st day of the year (262nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 291st day of the year (292nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ...


The Bundesrat (Federal Council) is the representation of the state governments at the federal level. It consists of 69 members who are delegates of the 16 Bundesländer and usually, but not necessarily include the 16 Minister Presidents themselves. The Länder each have from three to six votes in the Bundesrat, dependent on population. Bundesrat members receive voting instructions from their state governments. The Bundesrat (federal council) is the representation of the 16 Germany at the federal level. ... Germany is a Federal Republic made up of 16 States, known in German as Länder (singular Land). ...


The legislature has powers of exclusive jurisdiction and concurrent jurisdiction with the Länder in areas specifically enumerated by the Basic Law. The Bundestag bears the major responsibility. The necessity for the Bundesrat to concur on legislation is limited to bills related to revenue shared by the federal and state governments and those imposing responsibilities on the states, although in practice, this means that Bundesrat concurrence is very often required as federal legislation often has to be executed by state or local agencies.


Since the political orientation of the Bundesrat (which depends on the various state elections that occur independently of the federal ones) is quite frequently the opposite of that of the Bundestag, it has, in recent years, become more and more of a forum for the opposition parties, as opposed to one for state interests, as the constitution intended. To mitigate this effect members of the Bundestag and the Bundesrat form the Vermittlungsauschuss which seeks to build a compromise in cases when the two chambers can not agree on a certain piece of legislation.


Political parties and elections

e•d Summary of the 18 September 2005 German Federal Diet (Bundestag) election results
Parties Constituency Party list Total seats
Votes  % +/− Seats +/− Votes  % +/− Seats +/− Total +/−  %
Christian Democratic Union *) (Christlich-Demokratische Union) 15,390,950 32.6 +0.6 106 +24 13,136,740 27.8 -1.7 74 -34 180 -10 29.3
Christian Social Union of Bavaria *) (Christlich Soziale Union in Bayern) 3,889,990 8.2 -0.8 44 +1 3,494,309 7.4 -1.6 2 -13 46 -12 7.5
Social Democratic Party of Germany (Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands) 18,129,100 38.4 -3.5 145 -26 16,194,665 34.2 -4.3 77 -3 222 -29 36.2
Free Democratic Party (Freie Demokratische Partei) 2,208,531 4.7 +1.1 0 0 4,648,144 9.8 +2.5 61 +14 61 +14 9.9
The Left Party.PDS (Die Linke.PDS), since 2007: The Left (Die Linke) 3,764,168 8.0 +3.6 3 +1 4,118,194 8.7 +4.7 51 +51 54 +52 8.8
Alliance '90/The Greens (Bündnis '90/Die Grünen) 2,538,913 5.4 -0.2 1 0 3,838,326 8.1 -0.5 50 -4 51 -4 8.3
National Democratic Party of Germany (Nationaldemokratische Partei Deutschlands) 857,777 1.8 +1.6 0 0 748,568 1.6 +1.2 0 0 0 0 0.0
Other 1,272,410 2.7 0 0 1,857,610 4.0 0 0 0 0
Totals 47,194,062 100 299 47,287,988 100 315 +11 614 +11 100

More info: 16th German federal election, 2005 The Federal Council is composed by representatives of the State governments. A political party is a political organization subscribing to a certain ideology or formed around very special issues. ... This is a list of political parties in Germany. ... An election is a decision making process whereby people vote for preferred political candidates or parties to act as representatives in government. ... Elections in Germany gives information on election and election results in Germany, including elections to the Federal Diet (the lower house of the federal parliament), the Landtage of the various states, and local elections. ... Type Lower house President of the Bundestag Dr. Norbert Lammert, CDU since October 18, 2005 Members 614 Political groups Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union of Bavaria Bloc (226) Social Democratic Party of Germany (222) Free Democratic Party (61) The Left. ... The Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU — Christlich Demokratische Union Deutschlands) is the second largest political party in Germany. ... The Christian Social Union of Bavaria ( ) is a Christian democratic political party in Germany. ... SPD redirects here. ... The Free Democratic Party (German: Freie Demokratische Partei; FDP) is a liberal political party in Germany. ... The Left Party. ... The Left (German: or ) is a German political party that came into being on 16 June 2007 as a merger of The Left Party. ... The Alliance 90/The Greens (Bündnis 90/Die Grünen), the German Green party, is a political party in Germany whose regional predecessors were founded in the late 1970s as part of the new social movements. ... The National Democratic Party of Germany (German: , NPD) is a German nationalist political party. ... This article needs cleanup. ... The Christian Social Union of Bavaria ( ) is a Christian democratic political party in Germany. ... German federal elections took place on September 18, 2005 to elect the members of the 16th German Bundestag, the federal parliament of Germany. ...

[discuss] – [edit]
Composition of the German Bundesrat after the last State elections, May 13, 2007
Political profile of State governments
CDU/FDP 18
CDU 15
CDU/SPD 12
SPD/CDU 7
SPD/Left Party.PDS 4
CSU 6
SPD 4
SPD/The Greens 3
Total 69

The Bundesrat (federal council) is the representation of the 16 Federal States (Länder) of Germany at the federal level. ... The Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU — Christlich Demokratische Union Deutschlands) is the second largest political party in Germany. ... The Free Democratic Party (German: Freie Demokratische Partei; FDP) is a liberal political party in Germany. ... The Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU — Christlich Demokratische Union Deutschlands) is the second largest political party in Germany. ... The Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU — Christlich Demokratische Union Deutschlands) is the second largest political party in Germany. ... SPD redirects here. ... SPD redirects here. ... The Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU — Christlich Demokratische Union Deutschlands) is the second largest political party in Germany. ... SPD redirects here. ... The Left Party. ... The Christian Social Union of Bavaria ( ) is a Christian democratic political party in Germany. ... SPD redirects here. ... SPD redirects here. ... Déi Gréng ( Luxembourgish) are the Green party in Luxembourg. ...

Judicial branch

Since the independence of the judiciary of Germany is historically older than democracy in Germany, the organization of courts is traditionally strong, and almost all state actions are subject to judicial review. Besides a so-called "ordinary" judicial branch that handles civil and criminal cases, which is in turn composed of four levels of courts up to the Bundesgerichtshof in a fairly complex appeals system, there are separate branches for administrative, tax, labour, and social security issues, each with their own hierarchies. Courts are generally in the hands of the states, except for the highest courts of each branch, which are federal, respectively, to maintain a certain degree of unity in jurisdiction. The judiciarys independence and extensive responsibilities reflect the importance of the rule of law in the German system of government. ... The Bundesgerichtshof or BGH (German for federal court) is the highest Germany for civil and criminal lawsuits. ...


In addition, Germany has a powerful Constitutional Court, the Bundesverfassungsgericht. This is somewhat unique since the Grundgesetz stipulates in principle that every person may file a complaint to that court when his or her constitutional rights, especially the human rights, have been violated by the state and when he or she has exhausted all stages of appeal in the regular court system. Such actions can include laws passed by the legislative branch, court decisions, or acts of the administration. While in practice, only a small percentage of these constitutional complaints (Verfassungsbeschwerden) are successful, the Constitutional Court is known to frequently antagonise both the executive and the legislative branches with far-reaching decisions. This has even gone so far as judges openly stating that they are indifferent to the reactions of the government, the Bundestag, public opinion or any financial consequences arising from a decision with the only relevant point being the constitution. It should also be mentioned that the Bundesverfassungsgericht has very high approval rates throughout the general population. The Constitutional Court also handles several other procedures such as disputes between state institutions over their constitutional powers. It has also the power to outlaw political parties when their goals contravene the principles of the constitution. However so far the Constitutional court has only used this power twice, outlawing the KPD (Communist Party of Germany) in 1956 and the SRP (Socialist Reichs Party, a successor to the NSDAP) in 1952. The Bundesverfassungsgericht The Federal Constitutional Court (in German: Bundesverfassungsgericht, BVerfG) is a special court established by the German constitutional document, the Grundgesetz (Basic Law). ... The Nazi swastika The National Socialist German Workers Party (German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei), better known as the NSDAP or the Nazi Party was a political party that was led to power in Germany by Adolf Hitler in 1933. ...


Recent political issues

"Red-Green" vs. Conservative-led coalitions

"Vote (out) Red-Green" - election of 1990.

In the 1998 election the SPD emphasized commitment to reducing persistently high unemployment and appealed to voters' desire for new faces after 16 years of Helmut Kohl's government. Gerhard Schröder positioned himself as a centrist "Third Way" candidate in the mold of Britain's Tony Blair and America's Bill Clinton--he was critiqued as "Clintonblair" by some newspaper sources throughout his election campaign. The CDU/CSU stood on its record of economic performance and experience in foreign policy. The Kohl government was hurt at the polls by slower growth in the east in the past two years, widening the economic gap between east and west. The final margin of victory was sufficiently high to permit a "red-green" coalition of the SPD with Alliance '90/The Greens (Bündnis '90/Die Grünen), bringing the Greens into a national government for the first time. The first months of the new government were marked by policy disputes between the moderate and traditional left wings of the SPD, resulting in some voter disaffection. The first state election after the federal election was held in Hesse in February 1999. The CDU increased its vote by 3.5% to emerge as the largest party, and was able to replace an SPD/Green coalition with a CDU/FDP coalition. The result was interpreted in part as a referendum on the federal government's proposed new citizenship law, which would have eased requirements for long-time foreign residents to obtain citizenship, and permitted them to retain their original citizenship as well. Image File history File links BerlinGedenknisKircheJM.jpg‎ Taken and donated by John Mullen. ... Image File history File links BerlinGedenknisKircheJM.jpg‎ Taken and donated by John Mullen. ... CIA figures for world unemployment rates, 2006 Unemployment is the state in which a person is without work, available to work, and is currently seeking work. ... Helmut Josef Michael Kohl (born April 3, 1930) is a German conservative politician and statesman. ...   [] (born April 7, 1944), German politician, was Chancellor of Germany from 1998 to 2005. ... In politics, centrism usually refers to the political ideal of promoting moderate policies which land in the middle ground between different political extremes. ... Bill Clinton and Tony Blair, adherents of the Third Way The Third Way, or Radical center, is a centrist political philosophy of governance that embraces a mix of market and interventionist philosophies. ... For other people of the same name, see Tony Blair (disambiguation) Anthony Charles Lynton Blair (born May 6, 1953)[1] is the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, First Lord of the Treasury, Minister for the Civil Service, Leader of the Labour Party, and Member of Parliament for the constituency... William Jefferson Bill Clinton (born William Jefferson Blythe III[1] on August 19, 1946) was the 42nd President of the United States, serving from 1993 to 2001. ... The Christian Social Union of Bavaria ( ) is a Christian democratic political party in Germany. ... The Alliance 90/The Greens (Bündnis 90/Die Grünen), the German Green party, is a political party in Germany whose regional predecessors were founded in the late 1970s as part of the new social movements. ... Location Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2) Administration Country NUTS Region DE7 Capital Wiesbaden Largest city Frankfurt Minister-President Roland Koch (CDU) Governing party CDU Votes in Bundesrat 5 (from 69) Basic statistics Area  21,100 km² (8,147 sq mi) Population 6,077,000 (08/2006)[1]  - Density... German citizenship is based primarily on the principle of Jus sanguinis. ...


In March 1999, SPD chairman and Minister of Finance Oskar Lafontaine, who represented a more traditional social democratic position, resigned from all offices after losing a party-internal power struggle against Schröder. Oskar Lafontaine (born September 16, 1943 in Saarlouis-Roden) is a left-wing German politician and a leading member of the Left Party. ...


In state elections in 2000 and 2001, the respective SPD- or CDU-led coalition governments were re-elected into power.


The next election for the Bundestag was September 22, 2002. Gerhard Schröder led the coalition of SPD and Greens to an 11 seat victory over the conservative challengers headed by Edmund Stoiber (CSU). Two factors are generally cited that enabled Schröder to win the elections despite poor approval ratings a few months before: good handling of the 2002 European floods and firm opposition to the USA's 2003 invasion of Iraq. is the 265th day of the year (266th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Also see: 2002 (number). ... Edmund Stoiber in Würzburg Edmund Stoiber [IPA: ˈɛtmÊŠnt ˈʃtɔʏbɐ] (born September 28, 1941) is a German politician, currently minister-president of the state of Bavaria and chairman of the Christian Social Union (CSU). ... Floods in Dresden In August of 2002 a 100-year flood caused by over a week of continuous heavy rains ravaged Europe, killing dozens, dispossessing thousands, and causing damage of billions of euros in the Czech Republic, Austria, Germany, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, Romania and Croatia. ... This article is about the 2003 invasion of Iraq. ...


The coalition treaty for the second red-green coalition was signed October 16, 2002. With a significantly changed cabinet (see below), Schröder and Fischer began their second term. A coalition is an alliance among entities, during which they cooperate in joint action, each in their own self-interest. ... is the 289th day of the year (290th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Also see: 2002 (number). ...


Conservative comeback

In February 2003, elections took place in the states of Hesse and Lower Saxony, both leading to overwhelming victories for the conservatives. In Hesse, the CDU minister president Roland Koch was re-elected, with his party CDU gaining enough seats to govern without the former coalition partner FDP. In Lower Saxony, the former SPD minister president Sigmar Gabriel lost the elections, leading to a CDU/FDP-government headed by new minister president Christian Wulff (CDU). Both elections were seen as symptomatic for a widespread criticism against the federal red-green government. With an area of 47,618 km and nearly eight million inhabitants, Lower Saxony (German Niedersachsen) lies in north-western Germany and is second in area and fourth in population among the countrys sixteen Bundesl nder (federal states). ... Roland Koch Roland Koch (born March 24, 1958 in Frankfurt am Main) is a German politician. ... The Free Democratic Party (German: Freie Demokratische Partei; FDP) is a liberal political party in Germany. ... Sigmar Gabriel, February 2, 2003 in Hanover (Landtag of Lower Saxony) Sigmar Gabriel (born September 12, 1959 in Goslar) is a German politician (SPD). ... Christian Wulff, Premier of Lower Saxony Christian Wulff (born June 19, 1959 in Osnabrück) is a German politician (CDU) and Premier(Ministerpräsident) of Lower Saxony since March 4, 2003. ...


The protest against the Iraq war changed this situation a bit, favouring SPD and Greens.


The latest election in the state of Bavaria led to a landslide victory of the conservatives, gaining not just the majority (as usual), but two thirds of parliamentary seats. For other uses, see Bavaria (disambiguation). ...


In April 2003, chancellor Schröder announced massive labor market reforms, called Agenda 2010, that among other measures include a shakeup of the system of German job offices, cuts in unemployment benefits and subsidies for unemployed persons who start their own businesses. These changes are commonly known by the name of the chairman of the commission which conceived them as Hartz I - Hartz IV. Although these reforms have sparked massive protests they are now credited with being in part responsible for the economic upswing and the fall of unemployment figures in Germany in the years 2006/7. The Agenda 2010 is a series of reforms planned and executed by the German government which they say will modernise the German social system and labour market. ... The Hartz concept is the name given to the recommendations resulting from a commission on reforms to the German labour market in 2002. ...


The European elections on June 13, 2004 brought a staggering defeat for the Social Democrats, who polled only slightly more than 21%, the lowest election result for the SPD in a nationwide election since the Second World War. Liberals, Greens, conservatives and the far left were the winners of the European election in Germany, because voters were disillusioned by high unemployment and cuts in social security, while the governing SPD party seems to be concerned with quarrels between the party wings and unable to give any clear direction. Many observers believe that this election marked the beginning of the end of the Schröder government and indicates a process in which the SPD party seems to shrink and/or fall apart. is the 164th day of the year (165th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


Rise of the Right

In September 2004, elections were held in the states of Saarland, Brandenburg and Saxony. In the Saarland, the governing CDU was able to remain in power and gained one additional seat in the parliament and the SPD lost seven seats, while the Liberals and Greens were able to re-enter state parliament. The far-right National Democratic Party, which had never got more than 1 or 2% of the vote, received about 4%, although it failed to earn a seat in the state parliament (a party must obtain at least 5% of the vote to achieve state parliamentary representation). Location Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2) Administration Country NUTS Region DEC Capital Saarbrücken Minister-President Peter Müller (CDU) Governing party CDU Votes in Bundesrat 3 (from 69) Basic statistics Area  2,569 km² (992 sq mi) Population 1,044,000 (11/2006)[1]  - Density 406 /km... For the similarly spelled Brandenberg, see Brandenberg (Austria) or Brandenburg (disambiguation) Location Coordinates , , Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2) Administration Country NUTS Region DE4 Capital Potsdam Minister-President Matthias Platzeck (SPD) Governing parties SPD / CDU Votes in Bundesrat 4 (of 69) Basic statistics Area  29,479 km² (11,382... The Free State of Saxony (German: Freistaat Sachsen; Sorbian: Swobodny Stat Sakska) has a land area of 18,413 km² and a population of 4. ... Far right, extreme right, ultra-right, or radical right are terms used to discuss the qualitative or quantitive position a group or person occupies within a political spectrum. ... There is open debate on rather facism is rightwing or not. ...


Two weeks later, elections were held in the eastern states of Brandenburg and Saxony: once again, overall, the ruling parties lost votes and although they remained in power, the right to far-right parties made the big leaps. In Brandenburg, the Deutsche Volksunion (DVU) re-entered the state parliament after winning 6.1% of the vote. In Saxony, the NPD entered a non-competition agreement with the DVU and obtained 9.2% of the vote, thus winning seats in the state parliament. Due to their losses at the ballots, the ruling CDU of Saxony was forced to form a coalition with the SPD. The rise of the right to far-right is a trend that worries the ruling political parties. There is open debate on rather facism is rightwing or not. ...


German federal election 2005

On May 22, 2005 as predicted the SPD took a devastating defeat in its former heartland, North Rhine-Westphalia. Half an hour after the election results, the SPD chairman Franz Müntefering announced that the chancellor would clear the way for premature federal elections by the means of a purposely lost vote of confidence. This took the republic by surprise, especially because the SPD was below 25% in polls at the time. On the following Monday the CDU announced Angela Merkel as conservative candidate for chancellorship, aspiring to be the first female chancellor in German history. is the 142nd day of the year (143rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Coat of arms Location Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2) Administration Country NUTS Region DEA Capital Düsseldorf Prime Minister Jürgen Rüttgers (CDU) Governing parties CDU / FDP Votes in Bundesrat 6 (from 69) Basic statistics Area  34,084 km² (13,160 sq mi) Population 18,033,000... Franz Müntefering, 2005. ...   (IPA: ) (born Angela Dorothea Kasner, 17 July 1954, in Hamburg, Germany), is the Chancellor of Germany. ...


Whereas in May and June 2005 victory of the conservatives seemed highly likely, with some polls giving them an absolute majority, this picture changed shortly before the election at September 18, 2005, especially after the conservatives introduced Paul Kirchhof as potential minister of the treasury, and after a TV duel between Merkel and Schröder where many considered Schröder to have performed better. is the 261st day of the year (262nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Paul Kirchhof (* February 21, 1943 in Osnabrück) is a German expert in law and finance. ...


New for the 2005 election was the alliance between the newly formed Electoral Alternative for Labor and Social Justice (WASG) and the PDS, planning to fuse into a common party (see Left Party.PDS). With the former SPD chairman Oskar Lafontaine for the WASG and Gregor Gysi for the PDS as prominent figures, this alliance soon found interest in the media and in the population. Polls in July saw them as high as 12%. Labour and Social Justice – The Electoral Alternative (German: or WASG) is a German political party founded in 2005 by activists disenchanted with the Social Democratic-Green government. ... The Left Party (In German: , officially with a period at the end), formerly Party of Democratic Socialism (Partei des Demokratischen Sozialismus, PDS) is a left-wing socialist political party in Germany. ... Gregor Gysi Gregor Gysi (IPA: ; born January 16, 1948) is a German politician of the Left Party. ...


After success in the state election for Saxony, the alliance between the far right parties National Democratic Party and Deutsche Volksunion (DVU), which planned to leapfrog the "five-percent hurdle" on a common party ticket was another media issue. Location Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2) Administration Country NUTS Region DED Capital Dresden Minister-President Georg Milbradt (CDU) Governing parties CDU / SPD Votes in Bundesrat 4 (from 69) Basic statistics Area  18,416 km² (7,110 sq mi) Population 4,252,000 (11/2006)[1]  - Density 231 /km...


The election results of September 18, 2005 were surprising insofar as they differed widely from the polls of the previous weeks. The conservatives lost votes compared to 2002, reaching only 35%, and failed to get a majority for a "black-yellow" government of CDU/CSU and liberal FDP. The FDP polled a stunning 10% of the votes, one of their best results ever. But the red-green coalition also failed to get a majority, with the SPD losing votes, but polling 34% and the greens staying at 8%. The left party alliance reached 8.7% and entered the German Parliament, whereas the NPD only got 1.6%. is the 261st day of the year (262nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ...


The most likely outcome of coalition talks was a so-called "grand coalition" between the conservatives (CDU/CSU) and the social democrats (SPD), with the three smaller parties (liberals, greens and the left) in the opposition. Other possible coalitions include a "traffic light coalition" between SPD, FDP and Greens and a "Jamaica coalition" between CDU/CSU, FDP and Greens. Coalitions involving the Left Party have been ruled out by all parties (including the Left Party itself), although the combination of one of the major parties and any two small parties would mathematically have a majority. Of these combinations, only a red-red-green coalition is politically even imaginable. Both Gerhard Schröder and Angela Merkel announced that they had won the election and should become next chancellor. A grand coalition is a coalition government in a parliamentary system where political parties representing a vast majority of the parliament unite in a coalition. ... Traffic light coalition is a term originating in German politics where it describes a coalition of the Social Democratic Party (SPD), the Free Democratic Party (FDP), and the Green Party. ... Jamaicas national flag Jamaica coalition (German: Jamaika-Koalition; also known as the Jamaica alliance, Jamaica traffic light, black traffic light or Schwampel) is a term used to identify a potential coalition among the parties of the German Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union (CDU/CSU), Free Democratic Party (FDP...


On October 10, talks were held between Franz Müntefering, the SPD chairman, Gerhard Schröder, Angela Merkel and Edmund Stoiber, the CSU chairman. In the afternoon it was announced that the CDU/CSU and SPD would begin formal coalition negotiations with the aim of a Grand Coalition with Angela Merkel as the next German chancellor.
is the 283rd day of the year (284th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...


Angela Merkel is the first woman, the first East German and the first scientist to be chancellor as well as the youngest German chancellor ever. On November 22, 2005 Angela Merkel was sworn in by president Horst Köhler for the office of Bundeskanzlerin. is the 326th day of the year (327th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ...


Foreign relations

The Federal Republic of Germany is a Central European country and member of the European Union, Group of 8 and NATO (among others). ...

See also

The political culture of Germany as of the early 21st century is known for both its welfare government, business and labour corporatism and prevalent Green and social democratic forces. ... The German Emergency Acts were passed on 30 May 1968 at the time of the Grand Coalition between the Social Democratic Party of Germany and the Christian Democratic Union of Germany. ... German federal elections took place on September 18, 2005 to elect the members of the 16th German Bundestag, the federal parliament of Germany. ... This is a list of political parties in Germany. ...

External links

  • Official Site of the Bundesregierung
  • Official source of election results
  • Official source from the German Embassy in Washington, DC

The list of unrecognized countries enumerates those geo-political entities which lack general diplomatic recognition, but wish to be recognized as sovereign states. ...  Southwest Asia in most contexts. ... The borders of the continents are the limits of the several continents of the Earth, as defined by various geographical, cultural, and political criteria. ...  The North American plate, shown in brown The North American Plate is a tectonic plate covering most of North America, extending eastward to the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and westward to the Cherskiy Range in East Siberia. ...  The African plate, shown in pinkish-orange The African Plate is a tectonic plate covering the continent of Africa and extending westward to the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Politics of Germany information - Search.com (3052 words)
Politics of Germany takes place in a framework of a federal parliamentary representative democratic republic, whereby the Federal Chancellor is the head of government, and of a pluriform multi-party system.
The political systems of the individual states are prescribed by state constitutions, but resemble that of the federal level to a certain extent.
This rule, often called the "five percent hurdle", was incorporated into Germany's Election law to prevent political fragmentation and strong minor parties, which was considered a major reason for the inefficacy of the Weimar Republic's Reichstag.
politics of germany - Article and Reference from OnPedia.com (2130 words)
The political systems of the individual states are prescribed by state constitutions, but resemble that of the federal level to a certain extent.
This rule, often called the "five percent hurdle", is part of the constitution to prevent political fragmentation and strong minor parties, as this was considered a major reason for the inefficacy of the Weimar Republic's Reichstag.
The latest state elections in the eastern region of Germany showed that not only the governing Social Democrats were losing the support of the voters, but even the conservatives: in the fall of 2004 the voters in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) chose their local parliaments and mayors.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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