In Focus: The 2017 Bundestag election

German Bundestag, Berlin

In Focus: The 2017 Bundestag election

On 24 September, voters in Germany will head to the polls to elect the next Bundestag. This latest, election-themed instalment of our 'In Focus' series looks at how the Bundestag is elected, why Germany often has coalition governments and the parties and candidates vying the nation's votes.

How the Bundestag is elected

How the Bundestag is elected

The German Bundestag is elected through a combination of direct and proportional representation. Our interactive graphic looks at how the votes cast on election day determine the constellation of the German parliament.

Party posters for the upcoming Bundestag election

Which parties are up for election?

42 parties are up for election to the 19th German Bundestag on 24 September 2017. According to the latest polls, six parties are in the reach of receiving the necessary 5 percent of votes and would therefore make it into the Bundestag.

The coalition ministers in 2013

Germany: Where coalition governments are the rule

One benefit of the Bundestag’s election system of personalised proportional representation is the representation of smaller parties. This also means that Germany is virtually predestined for a coalition government. Since 1949, each of the 23 governments, with one exception, has been an alliance of several parties.

Reichstag in Berlin

The political system in Germany

Germany is a parliamentary and federal democracy based on the principle of the separation of powers. The political landscape is characterised by its multiparty system on national as well as state level. Coalition governments at federal and state level have been the norm since the foundation of the Federal Republic of Germany in 1949.

The televised political debate on election day borrows its name from elephants

Election Vocabulary

What do elephants have to do with the general election in Germany? What is a "Sunday question"? With the Bundestag elections around the corner, we take a look at the political terms that are so frequently used around this time.

The Embassy on Social Media

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Basic Law and Constitutional Organs

Basic Law

The Basic Law is the legal and political foundation of the Federal Republic of Germany. It defines the rights and duties of five state organs. The constitutional organs are the Bundestag, the Bundesrat, the Federal President, the Federal Government and the Federal Constitutional Court.

Word of the Week

Sturmfreie Bude

Once a week, we publish a word of the week on our Facebook page. Here you can click through all words of the week since late September 2013.