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Elections in Germany update:No turn to the right, after all!

 
 
nimh
 
Reply Fri 1 Oct, 2004 09:14 pm
This thread was originally titled Elections in Germany: Center fails, Far Right and Left gain. I changed the title as developments took a different turn, with the Christian-Democrats finally gaining momentum and picking up floating voters who previously had mostly scattered to the far ends of the political spectrum.

And changed it again on election night, 2005. Even if the Red-Green government will have to go and probably make room for a Grand Coalition of Christian-Democrats and Socialdemocrats, there is no turn to the right on the part of the electorate. The left as a whole has done no worse than three years ago: what the SPD (and marginally, the Greens) have lost, the Linkspartei to their left has won. The rightwing parties did not win any percentage point, the way it looks with almost all the votes in.

In September, the results of four subsequent elections in Germany raised some eyebrows: regional elections in the states of Saxony and Brandenburg (in East-Germany) and Saarland (in the West) and local elections in North-Rhine Westphalia, which includes the heavily populated Ruhr area.

Trends differed from election to election but some main patterns were clear:

- Low turnout
- Extremely bad results for the ruling Social-Democrats
- Disappointing results for the oppositional Christian-Democrats
- Gains, occasionally strong gains, for the parties of the extreme Right, with the neo-nazi NPD netting 9% in Sachsen and 4% in Saarland
- Gains for the junior government party, the Greens, and the junior opposition party, the Free Democrats (right-wing liberals)
- Gains for the former East-German communists, both in West and East
- Gains for numerous smaller parties

Here's the numbers. The largest five parties (Christian-Democrats, Social-Democrats, Greens, Rightwing-Liberals and Ex-Communists) are always listed on top, then the parties of the far right, then the rest, mostly by size except where I could easily group them by category.

For each elections, from left to right, you have the number of votes (in thousands) this time and last time, and gains/losses in votes; the percentage, this time and last time, and gains/losses in percentages; and gains/losses in percentages compared to the national elections of 2002.

Code:SAARLAND 5 SEPTEMBER 2004

ELECTION RESULTS REGIONAL ELECTIONS

PARTY '04 #k '99 #k +/- 2004 % 1999 % +/- 2002+/- CLASSIF

CDU/CSU 210 254 - 44 47,5 45,5 + 1,9 +12,5 Chr-Dem
SPD 136 247 -111 30,8 44,4 -13,5 -15,2 Soc-Dem
GRUENE 25 18 + 7 5,6 3,2 + 2,4 - 2,0 Greens
FDP 23 14 + 9 5,2 2,6 + 2,6 - 1,2 RW-Lib
PDS 10 4 + 6 2,3 0,8 + 1,5 + 0,9 Ex-Comm
NPD 18 * + 18 4,0 * + 4,0 + 3,3 Neo-Nazi
REPS * 7 - 7 * 1,3 - 1,3 - 0,4 FarRight
SCHILL * * * * * * - 0,9 FarRight
FAMILIE 13 6 + 7 3,0 1,0 + 2,0 + 1,9 Centr
GRAUE 6 * + 6 1,4 * + 1,4 + 0,9 Elderly
OTHERS 1 7 - 6 0,2 1,2 - 1,2 + 0,2

TURNOUT 55,5 68,7


Code:SACHSEN 19 SEPTEMBER 2004

ELECTION RESULTS REGIONAL ELECTIONS

PARTY '04 #k '99 #k +/- 2004 % 1999 % +/- 2002+/- CLASSIF

CDU/CSU 855 1,231 -376 41,1 56,9 -15,8 + 7,5 Chr-Dem
SPD 204 232 - 28 9,8 10,7 - 0,9 -23,5 Soc-Dem
GRUENE 107 56 + 51 5,1 2,6 + 2,5 + 0,5 Green
FDP 123 23 +100 5,9 1,1 + 4,8 - 2,2 RW-Lib
PDS 490 480 + 10 23,6 22,2 + 1,4 + 7,4 Ex-Comm
NPD 191 30 +161 9,2 1,4 + 7,8 + 7,8 Neo-Nazi
D-MARK * 46 - 46 * 2,1 - 2,1 * AntiEuro
REPS * 33 - 33 * 1,5 - 1,5 - 1,0 FarRight
SCHILL * * * * * * - 1,2 FarRight
TIERSCH 34 * + 34 1,6 * + 1,6 + 1,6 Animal R
GRAUE 19 7 + 12 0,9 0,3 + 0,6 + 0,3 Elderly
PBC 14 7 + 7 0,7 0,3 + 0,4 + 0,1 Christ
DSU 11 9 + 2 0,5 0,4 + 0,1 + 0,5 Conserv
BUSO 11 * + 11 0,5 0,1 + 0,4 + 0,2 Left-Pop
AUFBR 11 * + 11 0,5 * + 0,5 + 0,5 New Age
OTHERS 9 9 0 0,4 0,4 0 + 0,4


TURNOUT 59,6 61,1


Code:BRANDENBURG 19 SEPTEMBER 2004

ELECTION RESULTS REGIONAL ELECTIONS

PARTY '04 #k '99 #k +/- 2004 % 1999 % +/- 2002+/- CLASSIF

CDU/CSU 227 293 - 66 19,4 26,6 - 7,2 - 2,9 Chr-Dem
SPD 373 433 - 60 31,9 39,3 - 7,4 -14,5 Soc-Dem
GRUENE 42 21 + 21 3,6 1,9 + 1,7 - 0,9 Greens
FDP 39 20 + 19 3,3 1,9 + 1,4 - 2,5 RW-Lib
PDS 327 257 + 70 28,0 23,3 + 4,7 +10,8 Ex-Comm
DVU 71 58 + 13 6,1 5,3 + 0,8 + 6,1 FarRight
NPD * 8 - 8 * 0,7 - 0,7 - 1,5 Neo-Nazi
SCHILL * * * * * * - 1,7 FarRight
FAMILIE 31 * + 31 2,6 * + 2,6 + 2,6 Centr
50 PLUS 12 * + 12 1,0 * + 1,0 + 1,0 Elderly
GRAUE 10 * + 10 0,9 * + 0,9 + 0,3 Elderly
AfW 11 * + 11 0,9 * + 0,9 + 0,9 Free
BFWG * 7 - 7 * 0,6 - 0,6 * Free
AUB-BRANDB 10 * + 10 0,9 * + 0,9 + 0,9 Local
BRB 6 * + 6 0,5 * + 0,5 + 0,5 Local
OTHERS 10 4 + 6 0,9 0,3 + 0,6 + 0,9


TURNOUT 56,4 54,3


Code:NORDRHEIN-WESTFALEN 26 SEPTEMBER 2004

ELECTION RESULTS LOCAL ELECTIONS

PARTY '04 #k '99 #k +/- 2004 % 1999 % +/- 2002+/- CLASSIF

CDU/CSU 3,231 3,733 -502 43,4 50,3 - 6,9 + 8,3 Chr-Dem
SPD 2,356 2,519 -163 31,7 33,9 - 2,2 -11,3 Soc-Dem
GRUENE 769 543 +226 10,3 7,3 + 3,0 + 1,4 Greens
FDP 505 320 +185 6,8 4,3 + 2,5 - 2,5 RW-Lib
PDS 101 62 + 39 1,4 0,8 + 0,6 + 0,2 Ex-Comm
REPS 42 26 + 16 0,6 0,4 + 0,2 + 0,2 FarRight
SCHILL * * * * * * - 0,7 FarRight
NPD+DVU 24 8 + 16 0,3 0,1 + 0,2 + 0,1 FarRight
VOT.GR 355 vvv vvv 4,8 2,6 + 2,2 + 4,8 Local
OTHERS 53 213 +195 0,7 0,2 + 0,5 - 0,3

TURNOUT 54,5 55,0
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Thok
 
  1  
Reply Fri 1 Oct, 2004 11:01 pm
Well, interesting nobody from us post this before.

Unfortunaly the far rights gains many percent. The NPD has now 12 seats in the parliament of Saarland. First time since 1968.

I think, if the voters want protest against the goverment they should just not go to vote and not vote for the far right parties.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Oct, 2004 12:12 pm
Well, it seems -when we can believe today's polls- the trend is now again upwrds for the SPD and down for the CDU (especially up for Schröder and deep down for Merkel).

Yes, Thok, nobody posted this.
But I think, not many on A2K are interested in this ... and those, who are, already knew it :wink:



nimh

You are where here http://www.tagesschau.de/styles/container/image/style_images_default/0,1307,OID3668178,00.jpg Laughing
0 Replies
 
BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Oct, 2004 12:25 pm
Germany
Germany seems to have joined the trend of other western nations, whose populations are becoming more polarized into left and right politics and very few centrists left. This is not a good thing. Its the center that encourages compromises and bi-partisan cooperation and agreement.

BBB
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Oct, 2004 12:30 pm
Walter Hinteler wrote:
nimh

You are where here http://www.tagesschau.de/styles/container/image/style_images_default/0,1307,OID3668178,00.jpg Laughing


No, I wasn't there this time! I had actually registered to go help out with our stand there, blow up balloons, hand out leaflets and everything like the last two times - but I was ill the past two days, and I felt too weak to go out that long! So I had to mail and say I wasnt coming ...

My dad didnt go either! He went shopping for furniture in Rotterdam, I can't believe it ... 66 and finally sold out ... :wink:
0 Replies
 
hamburger
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Oct, 2004 04:34 pm
i read the reports on the german laender elections in the on-line issues of 'spiegel' and 'die welt'. i have to admit that the results are not pleasant, but they don't seem to be completely unexpected. i picked up the june 19 issue of 'the economist' at the library this morning. while it is not exactly up-to-date i like to read it about once a month because i think it does give me an understanding of what's going on in europe(even though it's a little to the right). they had a good commentary on the elections for the european parliament under the heading 'a plague on all their houses'. from what i understand, the voter turnout was not very good and particularly poor in the 'new' member states of the european community. the opinion of the economist is that the new constitution is is just too longwinded and incomprehensible for the citizens. also they think that many citizens have become very dis-satisfied with the brussels administration. perhaps the leaders of the european countries have to come to a better agreement on how to 'unite the new europe' ? what are the chances of a truly 'united europe' emerging ? hbg
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Oct, 2004 07:10 pm
Walter Hinteler wrote:
nimh

You are where here http://www.tagesschau.de/styles/container/image/style_images_default/0,1307,OID3668178,00.jpg Laughing


I just heard tonight - there were 200,000 people there! That's huge ... last year, I think we had only 30 or 50 thousand. 200k on the Museum Square and another 25k on the Dam, I think!

Returning to the topic of the thread, in (East-)Germany they started a series of "Monday demonstrations" over late summer I think, no - against the government's Harz policies? A loaded name - the "Monday demonstrations" were the weekly manifestations of escalating numbers that brought the GDR regime down in '89, right?
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Oct, 2004 07:17 pm
hamburger wrote:
they had a good commentary on the elections for the european parliament under the heading 'a plague on all their houses'. from what i understand, the voter turnout was not very good and particularly poor in the 'new' member states of the european community. the opinion of the economist is that the new constitution is is just too longwinded and incomprehensible for the citizens. also they think that many citizens have become very dis-satisfied with the brussels administration. perhaps the leaders of the european countries have to come to a better agreement on how to 'unite the new europe' ? what are the chances of a truly 'united europe' emerging ? hbg

Hi Hamburger,

we had some good discussion on the European Parliament elections at the "Following the EU" thread back then, more or less from around here onwards.
0 Replies
 
Thok
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Oct, 2004 08:23 pm
nimh wrote:

Returning to the topic of the thread, in (East-)Germany they started a series of "Monday demonstrations" over late summer I think, no - against the government's Harz policies? A loaded name - the "Monday demonstrations" were the weekly manifestations of escalating numbers that brought the GDR regime down in '89, right?


That's correct,against the Harz (IV) policies.

But the Monday demonstrations stopped last week.
0 Replies
 
hamburger
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Oct, 2004 08:29 pm
nimh : thanks for pointing me in the right direction. hbg ... time to close shop, more tomorrow
0 Replies
 
Thok
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Oct, 2004 08:45 pm
Apropos, today is the 14th anniversary of the reunification.

later recognized, typo
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Oct, 2004 09:18 pm
Congratulations to the Germans.

May all walls and fences that violently keep people from their friends and kin be ridden from this world ...

Korea would be a nice start.
0 Replies
 
Thok
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Oct, 2004 09:22 pm
nimh wrote:
Congratulations to the Germans.


Thanks.



nimh wrote:

May all walls and fences that violently keep people from their friends and kin be ridden from this world ...

Korea would be a nice start.


You are right. I agree.
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 2 Oct, 2004 10:13 pm
But folks - here, the trend is for the left to move to the centre and centre right - and for the right to move farther right - that is, our old moderate left now stand where the moderate right did - almost!!! - before.

Has this happened in Germany???? Is your left really centrist, now, I guess I am asking?

How far right is your right?
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Sun 3 Oct, 2004 01:14 am
The Social-Democrtas (the "esteblished" left, liberals, as our US-American friends would call them), is now a more les centrist, with a small leftish wing left (mostly just the normal party members like e.g. me) and a smalle rightish wing (most the few, who are governing).

The center thus went a bit more to the right.

Our right has always been far right - extreme far right is unconstutional.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Sun 3 Oct, 2004 01:18 am
Oh, and yes, of course not to forget the The Green.

They've established on the more left site.
Since there members are socially established as well, thus don't have no problems with social cuts, they are now THE for those, who usually would vote for our rightish liberals (F.D.P. - "Thomas' party") as well and eligible.
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Reply Sun 3 Oct, 2004 07:01 am
dlowan wrote:
But folks - here, the trend is for the left to move to the centre and centre right - and for the right to move farther right - that is, our old moderate left now stand where the moderate right did - almost!!! - before.

Has this happened in Germany???? Is your left really centrist, now, I guess I am asking?

How far right is your right?

Walter has the inside story of course, but my impression from the outside is that the Socialdemocrats have moved distinctly to the right since the 80s and early 90s, as Socialdemocrats have everywhere (Neue Mitte and all). But also that they've gone distinctly less far in embracing the logic of liberal market economics than the Dutch Labour Party has - not to mention, of course, Tony Blair's New Labour. German politics is still referred to here by both left and right as an example of "stagnation", compared to the far-reaching liberalisation policies practiced here by the left-right "purple" government in the 90s.

On the other hand, in Germany Angela Merkel's Christian-Democrats seem a veritable haven of benign, reasonable centrism compared to the tough, raucous line adopted nowadays by the right-wing here. It's like they are where we were under the "purple" government, with left and right both embracing and pushing budget cuts, privatisation etc, but otherwise remaining in a kind of centrist, low-key common eh, discourse. Here, the right-wing is two parties, the Chr-Dems and the right-wing liberals, and while the Chr-Dems are now profiling themselves as the "tough doctors" (we will accept no compromise, for your own good), the right-wing liberals have adopted the firebrand rhetorics of the Fortuynists (notably on asylum-seekers, integration and the myriad dangers of Islam). They've also adopted Fortuyn's defiant style: confronted with the announcement of the demonstrations, their leader Zalm said: "I'm looking forward to it, I'll wave at them from our window".

So yeah. Germany politically now looks to me somewhat like Holland in the 90s. The left party moves to the right, while the right party moves to or remains somewhat in the center. Here, too, that created space first on the far left, where the Greens flourished and then the Socialists boomed (although both, in turn, are much more liberal than the smaller, truly far left parties of the 80s). And later, as you'll know, it showed up the newly created political space on the right, when Fortuyn burst onto the scene. So I'm not surprised to see these results, especially when you realise that Germany still lacks the economic boom that kept much of the lurking discontent under wraps here in the mid-/late-nineties.

That's an outsider's view.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Sun 3 Oct, 2004 07:10 am
<reading along>






on the note of the 14th anniversary - hamburger and mrs. hamburger were in Germany that day. i wonder how they recall it.
0 Replies
 
Merry Andrew
 
  1  
Reply Sun 3 Oct, 2004 07:16 am
A friend of mine-- a recovered alcoholic who hasn't had a drink in more than 20 years -- was in Berlin on reunification day. He had gone over for the specific purpose of being a witness to history. He told me afterwards it took every ounce of his will-power not to get roaring drunk that day.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Sun 3 Oct, 2004 07:49 am
)Indeed, I see Angela Merkel's Christian-Democrats different to nimh.
And Stoiber's Christian-Socialists (the Bavarian part of the CDU), are sometimes more to left than the CDU. (Although generally, they are more conservative.)

The Social-Democrats didn't really move a lot in the 80's and early 90's, I think - all started about ten years ago, IMHO.

Stagnation? More steps back.
Take for instance the the student organisations of the parties. Themes, the established left is aiming for more are about the very as in the 70's ... but in the program of the conservative/right RCDS at those times. (Okay, it was chaotic then - and there, at universities :wink:
0 Replies
 
 

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