German federal election, 1953
The 2nd German federal election, 1953, was conducted on September 6, 1953, to elect members to the Bundestag
The Bundestag is a federal legislative body in Germany. In practice Germany is governed by a bicameral legislature, of which the Bundestag serves as the lower house and the Bundesrat the upper house. The Bundestag is established by the German Basic Law of 1949, as the successor to the earlier...

 (lower house) of West Germany
West Germany
West Germany is the common English, but not official, name for the Federal Republic of Germany or FRG in the period between its creation in May 1949 to German reunification on 3 October 1990....


Issues and Campaign

Federal Chancellor Adenauer (who was also the Christian Democratic leader) campaigned on his policies of economic reconstruction and growth, moderate conservatism or Christian democracy, and close relations with the United States. The new Social Democratic leader - Kurt Schumacher had died in 1952 - was Erich Ollenhauer, who was more moderate in his policies than Schumacher had been. He did not oppose, in principle, the United States military presence in Western Europe. In fact, he later - in 1957 - supported a military alliance of most European countries, including Germany (see, for example, Erling Bjöl, Grimberg's History of the Nations, volume 23: The Rich West, "A Giant Dwarf: West Germany," Helsinki: WSOY, 1985; Dennis L. Bark and David R. Gress, A History of West Germany: Volume 1: 1945-1963: From Shadow to Substance, London, UK: Basil Blackwell, 1989). Adenauer managed to convince clearly more West German voters of his leadership abilities and economic and political success to easily win a second term, although he had to form a coalition government with the Free Democrats to gain a majority in the Bundestag.


A number of non-voting members (6 CDU, 11 SPD, 5 FDP) indirectly elected by the West Berlin legislature
Abgeordnetenhaus von Berlin
The Abgeordnetenhaus of Berlin is the state parliament for the German state of Berlin, according to the state's constitution. The parliament is based at the building on Niederkirchnerstraße in Mitte which until 1934 was the seat of the lower house of the Preußischer Landtag...

 are not included in the totals below. It is also noted that the French Saar Protectorate
Saar (protectorate)
The Saar Protectorate was a German borderland territory twice temporarily made a protectorate state. Since rejoining Germany the second time in 1957, it is the smallest Federal German Area State , the Saarland, not counting the city-states Berlin, Hamburg and Bremen...

 did not participate in this election. It was also the first time since 1907 (apart from the 1932-1933 elections) that the Social Democrats did not win the most seats, with the Christian Democrats winning the largest share of seats.
Party Party List votes Vote percentage (change) Total Seats (change) Seat percentage
Christian Democratic Union (CDU) 10,016,594 36.4% +11.2% 191 +76 39.1%
Social Democratic Party
Social Democratic Party of Germany
The Social Democratic Party of Germany is a social-democratic political party in Germany...

7,944,943 28.8% -0.4% 151 +20 31.0%
Christian Social Union (CSU) 2,427,387 8.8% +3.0% 52 +28 10.7%
Free Democratic Party
Free Democratic Party (Germany)
The Free Democratic Party , abbreviated to FDP, is a centre-right classical liberal political party in Germany. It is led by Philipp Rösler and currently serves as the junior coalition partner to the Union in the German federal government...

2,629,163 9.5% -2.4% 48 -4 9.9%
All-German Bloc/League of Expellees and Deprived of Rights
All-German Bloc/League of Expellees and Deprived of Rights
The All-German Bloc/League of Expellees and Deprived of Rights was a right-wing political party in West Germany, which acted as an advocacy group of the Germans fled and expelled in and after World War II.-History:...

1,613,215 5.9% +5.9% 27 +27 5.5%
German Party
German Party
The German Party is a name used by a number of German political parties in the country's history. The current incarnation is represented only at the local level in Germany. However, from 1949 to 1961, a German Party was part of the ruling coalition in the Bundestag...

1,073,031 3.3% -0.7% 15 -2 3.1%
German Center Party (DZP) 217,078 0.8% -2.3% 3 -7 0.6%
Communist Party
Communist Party of Germany
The Communist Party of Germany was a major political party in Germany between 1918 and 1933, and a minor party in West Germany in the postwar period until it was banned in 1956...

611,317 2.2% -3.5% 0 -15 0.0%
All Others 1,018,544 4.3%   0   0.0%
Totals 27,551,272 100.0%   487 +85 100.0%


Konrad Adenauer
Konrad Adenauer
Konrad Hermann Joseph Adenauer was a German statesman. He was the chancellor of the West Germany from 1949 to 1963. He is widely recognised as a person who led his country from the ruins of World War II to a powerful and prosperous nation that had forged close relations with old enemies France,...

 remained Chancellor, governing in a broad coalition (2/3 majority) with most of the minor parties except for the SPD.


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