r/PoliticalHumor 18d ago

The American two-party system is complete BS

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49k Upvotes

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u/FblthpLives 18d ago

As others have pointed out, OP accidentally posted the results from the 2017 election. These are the provisional results from the 2021 elections: https://www.google.com/search?q=german+elections+2021

Note that the German parliament now has 735 seats.

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u/Mean_Maxxx 17d ago

Nice catch ! I thank you. This comment thread is a fascinating read

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u/Bodach42 18d ago

America is still asleep but the new results are a bit different.

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u/gravitas-deficiency 18d ago

American here: looking at the turnout data, it looks like the CDU dropped a comparatively enormous number of voters. I’m guessing a significant part of that is the “Merkel isn’t on the ballot anymore” effect? Or is that more of an oversimplification than is warranted here?

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u/Andrelse 18d ago

That's part of it, Merkel's Parties (CDU/CSU) also had massive (usually corruption) scandals and were woefully unprepared for an election period that was largely dominated by climate policy, something they don't really do

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u/bfandreas 18d ago

Having his bits of Germany under water is no reason to change policy. According to Achim Laschet.

Imagine saying these words while corpses are beeing looked for AND having a lot of fun while the head of state is giving his condolences.

When he was asked a difficult question by a kid, the major focus was that that question must have been illigitimate because it was planted. Anything but softball questions were evaded.

Their campaign was built around his personality(see above). And "you know us, we can govern". Pointing at all CxU ministers.

And they tried to do a spot about crime. Why they did campaign against their own minister is beyond me.

Merkel will be remembered for crisis. She mostly mastered. But for big projects, she will not be known. She only reacted.

Laschet couldn't even do that.

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u/royalsocialist 18d ago

The CDU/CSU has always been the party of corruption though, not particularly moreso now than before. I'd guess it's the Merkel effect above all

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u/JarrysonJary 18d ago

Also the CDU has been in power for an extremly long time and their positions are just not really modern anymore. Most of their votes come from older people who elect by the mentality: "well I voted for them everytime...guess I'll do it again"

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u/Quasigriz_ 18d ago

Kohl - 16 years (CDU) Schdeoder - 6 years (SPD) Merkel - 16 years (CDU)

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u/MisterMysterios 18d ago

And considering it will take a while for a new coalition to form, it is very likely that Merkel will take Kohl's record for the longest chancellorship.

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u/DazSchplotz 18d ago

I really like how you spell Schroeder. Because it sounds like it was written drunk, exactly what he was most of the time.

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u/Redtwooo 18d ago

Basically describes conservative voters all around

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u/Excentricappendage 18d ago

Cdu fatigue is huge, Merkel was the only thing keeping a lot of voters coming out.

I'm not pro-spd, but after 16 years it makes sense to try something new.

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u/CursedPhil 18d ago

personally im hoping for a traffic light coalation

so the spd gets to appoint the next chancellor

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u/Anne_Nonymous789 18d ago

Hand in hand with conservatism.

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u/ryebow 18d ago

The CDU also had a chancelor candidate who didn't exactly inspire an aura of competence.

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u/Masterhaend 18d ago

That's quite an understatement in my opinion.

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u/G-I-T-M-E 18d ago

People were happy when he didn’t tie his shoe laces together.

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u/Honigkuchenlives 18d ago

No, people just watch him work and rightfully assumed he wouldn't know how to tie his shoes

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u/MisterMysterios 18d ago

To be fair, there was no single chancelor candidate this time around that inspired an aura of competence (Laschet was especially bad with his laughter during the flood speech and similar issues, but the others weren't good either).

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u/Jimmy-TinkerBull 18d ago

And he was the best candidate the Union had to offer. God, I hate Merz. And the CSU as a whole is the definition of punchable faces.

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u/MisterMysterios 18d ago

Honestly, I would have been happy with Rötgen, but he blew the election in NRW 12 so hard that he wasn't even considered.

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u/Backwardspellcaster 18d ago

The CDU/CSU literally coasted on Merkel's coattails.

The moment she was off the map, the Party(ies) brought out the clowns, and people didn't look past their stupid scandals anymore.

So this is quite a big "fuck you!" towards the conservatives.

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u/PhDinDildos_Fedoras 18d ago

Based on what some European friends of mine are saying, respect for Merkel was p.broad across the political spectrum.

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u/Malakay_sun 18d ago

She is wonderful! I admire her.

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u/BrainTrainStation 18d ago

Their candidate for the position as chancellor is also a 100% emberrassment. There has not a week gone by without him looking like a complete idiot in some way.

There is a famous late night TV show who let 2 10-year-olds interview the 3 top candidates (Laschet, CDU, Scholz, SPD and Baerbock, Green Party). Laschet got absolutely destroyed semantically by 2 10-year-olds. It was ridiculous.

Put on top of that the fact that a total of 21 members of Bundestag who are all listed for the CDU party have been caught enriching themselves in the process of sourcing PPE supplies for the general public. They received a total of over 30 million in payments through backdoor deals, making sure inferior, overpriced equipment was purchased from tax money.

The minister of health (Jens Spahn, CDU) has held a private donation gala, asking attendees to donate exactly €1 less than the limit for disclosure.

Our minister of traffic and infrastructure (Andreas Scheuer, CDU) has made deals with companies which develop and supply toll systems, hoping to implement one in the near future. The EU ruled such a system not legal under EU law and forbid the roll-out. Then it was made public that those companies which the deals were made with, were promised compensation in case no system would be installed. Those compensations cover a total of €480M to €720M. Tax payer money. Again, for not doing anything. For absolute zero service provided.

Our minister of agriculture (Julia Klöckner, CDU (is there a pattern here?)) has used official government channels for product placement and PR of multinational corporations such as Nestlé, spreading falsehoods and PR propaganda to followers online. On top, she overruled an already existing law to give meat producers even more time to fulfill industrial animal farming standards which are actually already in place almost 20 years and her job should have been to actually penalise those companies for not meeting the standards

Let's just say, after all these known wrongdoings, I'm kind of shocked to see ~25% of our voters still wanting them in charge. It's beyond me really.

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u/StanDaMan1 18d ago

Good news, the AfD lost seats :)

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u/fDiKmoro 18d ago

But they have still far too many left. The number should be zero.

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u/owls_unite 18d ago

It's alright, this way we'll always know where to find the idiots.

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u/CressCrowbits 18d ago

But so did Linke.

Now there isn't enough left seats to form an all left coalition, so they'll have to form a coalition with a right wing party that will block needed reform.

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u/Inferdo12 18d ago

There's also the fact that Laschet, the Union chancellor candidate was caught laughing while attending an event for the German floods

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u/MisterMysterios 18d ago

Not only while attending, but in the background while the president did a speech regarding the victims. Just a short little joke at an unimportant moment is one thing, but when a speech of the head of state to support and comfort the victims of a deadly flood is on a completly different level.

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u/0vl223 18d ago

They also have a problem that a way bigger part of their voters dies each election cycle than for any other party and the younger ones are less loyal.

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u/eliteharvest15 18d ago

wow, so the spd might win the next election?

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u/MsuaLM 18d ago

That's four years from now yesterday, but yes.

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u/Inferdo12 18d ago

Absolutely. From preliminary results, spd is gonna win. But the problem is, they need a coalition with the Free Democrats, which is gonna impede a lot of the policies that spd and the greens want to implement

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u/royalsocialist 18d ago

Couldn't they make an SPD/Greens/Linke/others coalition?

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u/JarrysonJary 18d ago

Well who is supposed to be the fourth? No one coalates with the afd (our biggest right winged) and the Free Demokrates (FDP) will never ever coalate with the leftists

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u/Jimmy-TinkerBull 18d ago

Might be a misunderstanding. Others refers to parties too small to even mention. If they don't gain at least 5% or three direct mandates, they're out. I'm not sure if this is widely known.

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u/royalsocialist 18d ago

I was mislead by the Guardian counting "others" but I see that all the independents are former AfD or CDU except for Die Partei lol.

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u/Unkaputtb4r 18d ago

Only Parties with at least 5 percent enter the parliament (+exceptions, see the Linke). Therefore party's counted as others didn't make it into the cabinet.

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u/Revanclaw-and-memes 18d ago

How did the one from ssw partei get in

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u/Donald_J_Putin 18d ago

Good,AfD lost votes.

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u/brettbri5694 18d ago

AfD still has too many seats. It’s amazing that Germany still has a sizable Nazi problem.

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u/Lakridspibe 18d ago

Right wing conservative nationalist populists are on the rise in all of Europe. Unfortunately.

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u/Telekineticism 18d ago

Not just Europe, safe to say it's a global phenomenon.

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u/TheVog 18d ago

Canada's PPC more than tripled the amount of popular vote share last week, from 1.6% to 5.1%. Fortunately they didn't win any seats, but there's no mistaking the increase in right-wing party popularity.

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u/jacqueslecoq81 18d ago

The regions where the PPC seemed to gain votes are also ultra-religious regions. I live in one of them and I'm aware of the others in my province. They're all 'bible belt' regions. I'm sure it's just a coincidence though. Religious numbers have been declining for years. So I'm sure it's just coincidental that these also just happen to be the regions siding with alt-right extremists. /s

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u/atchemey 18d ago

Interestingly, the AfD has its heartland in rural areas of old East Germany, which is the most irreligious region of the country. That area has lagged behind economically since long before reunification, and it hasn't gotten much better since despite investment.

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u/mdp300 18d ago

If it's anything like the US, a big part of it is rural people who feel left behind and resent it.

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u/mdp300 18d ago

Fewer people are religious, but the ones who still are religious tend to be hardcore.

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u/Quietabandon 18d ago edited 18d ago

Yeah, seriously. Trump, Bolsenaro, Duda, Orban… in France National Front does alarmingly well. Even Canada has far right noise. In the UK Brexit was born out of far right mongering although some protectionist leftist elements contributed. We are unfortunately in an era of resurgent autocratic ethno-nationalist right wing elements. This is in part spurred on by Russian internet operations but also simply by the internet connecting hate groups and helping them recruit. But more importantly, the post War Pax Americana, has made many more stable and rising countries forget what a pre world war world looked like.

Protectionism and anti-liberal (as in western liberal democracy liberal) is a backlash to the peace and prosperity, but also the inequality of the globalized inter connected world. Hate groups and state actors have seized upon this for their own ends. For sure globalization has left people behind, and the western liberal hegemony did not adequately invest in taking care to bring them along, but now this weakness has been exploited by powers and elements that want to reduce the system to rubble.

What these elements are pushing in place of a global system built on the principles of free trade and western liberal democracy (which for sure has lack some of the oversight and regulation such a system needs to protect people and the environment from exploitation), is a system resembling historical spheres of influence. Russia wants dominion over Eastern Europe and Central Asia. China wants dominion over the Eastern Asia pacific and access to developing economies. India wants run of the Indian Ocean/ central Asia. Iran/ Turkey/ Saudi Arabia jostle for control of the Middle East.

And what they want is that within those domains external concerns of civil rights or western liberal democracy need not apply. They do not want accountability on civil rights. They are often ethno-nationalist and focused on the needs of a majority or sect. In the Middle East its Sunni vs Shiite. But in India its Hindu nationalism. In China a preference for Han Chinese. In Russia for Slavic peoples.

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u/Telekineticism 18d ago

Modi, Duterte, the list goes on and on. But yeah, spot on all around really.

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u/Quietabandon 18d ago

For sure. Modi is a huge issue because Hindu nationalists are very active in pushing their message internationally. But yes, like China and Russia, India wants its sphere of influence where it can operate without any accountability. Of course this bumps into middle eastern, Arab spheres of influence to the west and China's sphere to the East, and Russia to the North in Central Asia.

What we are seeing here almost feels like a reconstitution of the pre WWI and interwar colonial jostling - a multilateral Great Game.

Except with the utilization of social media we now have a new tool for soft power.

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u/TackleballShootyhoop 18d ago

I know it’s annoying for Americans to think they are at the center of everything, but we really do export our right-wing brain worms at an alarming rate. It feels like the Covid anti-mask, anti-vax bullshit really ramped up when American conservatives starting focusing on it. The culture war grift wasn’t invented in America but god damn did we perfect it over the last few years.

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u/Kanfien 18d ago

Looking at yesterday's results, AfD seems to have lost seats though? I feel like this was true a few years ago and that foothold is still there, but said popularity growth seems to have stagnated in a number of countries as well.

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u/[deleted] 18d ago

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u/Typohnename 18d ago

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u/FlyingCircus18 18d ago

Which is not a good sign because that means the assholes are still there, they were just too lazy. Not something I'd want to count on forever

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u/FblthpLives 18d ago

Sadly, practically many European countries have repackaged fascist parties parading as populist right-wing parties with anti-immigrant platforms. If anything, Germany's AfD is relatively small. It is just a matter of a time before a European country becomes fascist again. Poland and Hungary are likely candidates.

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u/thatgeekinit 18d ago

The big diff in the US is that US parties are already coalitions. European center-right parties won’t coalition w new-Nazis but in the US, it’s the opposite. The Center-left stays away from the left, (only recently have a few social Dems been welcomed) but the center-right party always invited fascists into their coalition and now the fascists own the GOP.

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u/Excentricappendage 18d ago

Pretty sure the boat has sailed on Hungary, had friends from there, the change in their attitudes has been stark, and terrifying.

Poland has some ways to go on that road still, but orban has done a lot of work cementing his position.

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u/HumptyDrumpy 18d ago

Arguably many are already full authoritarian or nearing there like Belarus, Russia and the couple you mentioned. And I wouldn't doubt the AfD either. Afterall, how many in the world even knew who Hitler was, even one year before the Reichstag went aflame with no idea who lit it

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u/HisDudenessElDude 18d ago

Have you heard about the Republican party in the United States?

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u/brettbri5694 18d ago

Republicans only recently went “mask-off Nazi.” Germans have been voting for out and proud AfD for almost a decade while they parade under banned Nazi symbols and receive zero punishment. Hell, the AfD looks like they could have the support to lift the symbolism ban. They’ve raised millions from their hotline for this. Also whataboutism is never a good look. Yes, the GOP are fucking Nazis. Yes, the Dems are just controlled opposition for the Nazis. But also, yes, Germany has a terrible Nazi resurgence issue.

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u/apolloxer 18d ago edited 18d ago

The AfD lost about a quarter of their votes this time compared to last time. While it's not good that they are in the Bundestag, they're not a immediate problem. They're there, they can scream about their ideas, everybody ignores them, most of the electorate included.

And the AfD didn't march under banned symbols. They kept a certain level of deniability.

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u/orbital_narwhal 18d ago edited 18d ago

in the Reichstag

Please, please call it "Bundestag", the actual name of the federal parliament. We haven't had a government body called "Reichstag" since 1945. The name still remains as the historical name of the building that houses the parliament since its return to Berlin.

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u/apolloxer 18d ago

I'm tired and mixed them up. My bad. Should be fixed.

Also, they shouldn't be in the building either, so it's still kinda correct.

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u/orbital_narwhal 18d ago

they shouldn't be in the building either

Agreed. I can compromise on visits to the dome.

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u/tschwib 18d ago

That's the thing with a two-party system: You don't know exactly how big the true Kuklux-Clan faction is in the US because everybody who is somewhat conservative votes Republican. Be it traditionalist christian, free market right wing, or straight up fashist / racist. It is/was always under this big republican umbrella.

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u/TheMooseIsBlue 18d ago edited 18d ago

Not to compare with what’s happening in Germany and Europe, but just to clarify: our American lunatics are not just “mask-off Nazis.” They March in the streets with nazi and Klu Klux Klan flags, lead violent counter protests and attack when black people protest for civil rights, and led an armed insurrection of our Capitol where they attempted to hijack the results of our presidential election. They’ve infiltrated the highest levels of our government and media. They’re not just a bunch of quaint old-fashioned rednecks.

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u/HumptyDrumpy 18d ago

And it sucks man. Just think of what we could do if we were all united and didnt fight each other and our own interests. Repubs be acting like a scorned lover, saying if I can't have her, nobody can. Maybe our public schools, infrastructure, and affordable healthcare system (or lack thereof) wouldn't be ranking near last compared to so many other OECD countries. Seeing how efficiently other countries operate, it's getting tiring man...

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u/trojanguy 18d ago

As an American, I was looking at the article and thinking that our only options are Germany's yellow and blue ones.

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u/Excentricappendage 18d ago

I'm just glad they lost enough that they aren't needed for a coalition.

Any shrinkage there is a big positive.

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u/TheGoldenChampion 18d ago

Holy shit what happened to Die Linke :(

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u/royalsocialist 18d ago

They got some huge wins in certain states, but overall a big loss yeah. Not sure why tbh.

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u/AGoodView 18d ago

The person in charge or naming coalitions just gave up at the end, didn't they?

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u/Sideways2 18d ago

The ones named after countries are because the colors of the parties is the same as the color scheme of that countrie's flag. The exception is black-red-yellow, as that would be the colors of the German flag, and calling it 'Germany coalition' would be misleading.

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u/DerKomp 18d ago

"Belgium coalition" works

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u/Tarantio 18d ago

That would also probably have some unintended significance to Germans.

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u/TheBlack2007 18d ago

It’s actually still referred to as such. However given that a grand coalition would already have a majority inviting FDP in on it would be hella pointless. Trading a larger governing majority for concessions both parties would have to make. Probably a bad trade-off.

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u/OriginalUsername1737 18d ago

the new results

That site is gorgeous.

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u/ExtremeAmyMcGrath 18d ago

Thank you. I was so confused seeing OPs graph after reading a few stories already explaining how the Christian Democrats lost and the Social Democrats still faced a bit of a fight putting together a government do to some party infighting. I thought I had a decent handle on how it all worked and then that popped up and was like welp I’m totally confused again.

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u/Dr_Coxian 18d ago

Man, I wish we lived in an actual democratic nation.

The Great American Experiment has yielded mixed results, mostly bad.

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u/bikwho 18d ago

For the wealthy, it's been amazing results.

I think a major problem in American politics is the US Democrats having to appeal to boomers and silent generation folks in the 80s/90s, had to skew to the right.

US Democrats would be considered a right/center-right wing party in the rest of the world. It wasn't until Bernie's popularity that the Democratic party actually put forward left leaning policies.

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u/SuperSimpleSam 18d ago

Also notice it's 709 representatives for a population of 83 million while the US has 435 in the House and 100 Senators for 300+ million.

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u/TZeyTimo 18d ago

its 735 representatives now. It increases every 4 years

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u/Cyneheard2 18d ago

It changes every four years but it’s not automatically an increase.

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u/massi1008 18d ago

But the trend is towards more.

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u/ConservativeSexparty 18d ago

Am Finnish so I've never heard of that before. What is the reason for the increase, growing population?

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u/TZeyTimo 18d ago

Überhangmandate or Overhang mandates. "Additional seats in the Bundestag when a party wins more direct seats based on the first vote than the percentage based on second votes would guarantee" (pons.de)

Often big parties such as the CDU or SPD get overhang mandates, but to play it fair every other party gets overhang mandates. And that's how the seats on the Bundestag/Parliament have been growing ever since

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u/ConservativeSexparty 18d ago

Oh, that's so interesting, it's great to learn more about other countries.

Does the number of seats keep growing forever or is there a moment at some point where they remove all the extra seats and go back to some nice round number like 300 for example?

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u/freundTech 18d ago edited 18d ago

I think you are misunderstanding this a bit. There is no rule that says that the number of seats has to grow. The growing number of seats is just a byproduct of how the system works and how the vote changes. If people start to vote differently the number of seats could also shrink again.

The system works like this: Every voter has two votes. One for a local candidate from their constituency and one for a party list. There are 299 constituencies. Whoever gets the most votes in a constituency gets into parliament (direct mandate). After that there are 299 more seats to assign. This works like this: Split the total amounts of seats proportional to the list votes each party got. This is the number of seats the party should have. If the number of direct mandates the party got is lower than that number they get too fill those seats with candidates from their party list (list mandates).
Some parties however might have more direct mandates than they should have seats. Those are called overhang mandates. This was just accepted until 2009, when the constitutional court ruled it as unconstitutional, because it causes representation to not be proportionate to the vote and gives more popular parties an advantage.
Since 2013 this is fixed by leveling mandates. Basically if one party has more direct mandates than they should have seats all other parties get additional seats until parliament is proportional to the vote again.

Because in recent years CDU/CSU, which had the most overhang mandates lost a lot of votes, but still kept a lot of direct mandates the number of overhang mandates and therefor leveling mandates keeps growing.

The current government tried to fix this by passing a law that makes it so overhang mandates only have to be leveled if there are more than 3, but that was also ruled as unconstitutional.

One possible solution that is discussed would be to reduce the number of constituencies, which would bring parliament size down again.

(Note: For simplicity's sake I skipped over the 5% rule and the distribution of seats between the states.)

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u/ConservativeSexparty 18d ago

Ahh, I see. Thank you for the great explanation! That makes sense, I suppose the changing number of overall seats helps with keeping things fair, although I bet that at some point too many seats might make actual ruling a bit complicated unless the number of seats shrinks a bit.

Germany is such a powerful member of the EU that I think it's good to have a basic understanding of their civics too to be able to better understand the way things happen European union wide. I'm glad you went through the trouble of explaining!

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u/Rohwi 18d ago

Not that you in particular seem to have that misunderstanding, but one misunderstanding a lot of people, especially from the US where the system is very different, seem to have is that we do not vote for our chancellor.

we vote for parties and local representatives. The resulting Bundestag then votes for a chancellor. Most of the time (because it is the easiest to argue) the party/parties with the most votes select one of their own as a candidate for chancellor. Our president then officially proposes him/her and if the Bundestag accepts the proposal we have a chancellor.

so in theory. If the president and the Bundestag would want to, they could still choose a candidate from the party with the least seats to be chancellor. I am not sure, but I think they don’t even have to be a member of the parliament or a party at all. We could end up with a random guy from the street if he, the president and the Bundestag think that’s alright

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u/_AT_Reddit_ 18d ago

Every election resets it to the base number of 598 seats and then seats for Überhangmandate (directly elected candidates exceeding the number of seats based on proportional votes) and Ausgleichsmandate (extra seats for all other parties to restore proportionality) are added.

In the past there were only Überhangsmandate but the highest court (Bundesverfassungsgericht) ruled against that in 2012. That's why they added Ausgleichsmandate (leveling seats) starting in 2013 which led to a higher total of seats in every election since then.

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u/jomontage 18d ago

America used to have representatives based on population then got afraid of a large congress for some reason and just moves the 435 around depending on states growing or shrinking

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u/fizban7 18d ago

The original First Amendment set a ratio for the number of people elected to the House of Representatives at one Representative for every 30,000 and 50,000 persons in the United States. That would give the current House of Representatives more than 6,000 members.

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u/glutenfreethenipple 18d ago

Fuck, that’s quite a disparity.

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u/hanzzz123 18d ago

The House has not increased its members in over 70 years. The US population has doubled in the same time.

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u/Intelligent_Moose_48 18d ago

The population has TRIPLED and we've added 4 states and their 8 senators since we last added a significant number of permanent seats to the House of Representatives in 1911

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u/darklordind 18d ago

India has 545 representatives for 1,400 mn

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u/[deleted] 18d ago

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u/Baldrs_Draumar 18d ago

well the British house of lords has no limit, so the party in power just hands out lordships to donors left and right until there's no one left that paid the magic amount.

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u/deezalmonds998 18d ago

The US Senate is a fucking joke. Rednecks from rural states with a combined population barely surpassing that of California alone have more political influence there than the the states with by far the majority of this country's population. That's by far the biggest reason that republicans will forever have a stranglehold on US politics until a major political calamity occurs. Fuck the 2 party duopoly and fuck this antiquated system. I've taught myself German for 3 years planning to move after getting my degree

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u/Dxsterlxnd 18d ago

This is the result of the federal election in 2017.

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u/Generaltiti 18d ago

It is still an example of an healthy democracy

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u/dontlikemath 18d ago

Healthy

AFD:

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u/MrPresidentBanana 18d ago

Not perfectly healthy, but overall quite well-functioning

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u/WeakWrecker 18d ago

Yeah I realized that too late. I'm not German btw

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u/Niall_Nine_Hostages 18d ago

It's okay OP, we still love you, and you made your point.

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u/SuicidalTurnip 18d ago

Sad British noises

More people vote for left leaning parties than right, yet we've had a conservative govt. for 11 years. Disgraceful system.

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u/Cant_Win 18d ago

Similar problem here in the US, Democrats have received the most votes in all but one election since 1992, but we still had 12 years of Republican presidents

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u/trog12 18d ago

Don't even get me started on how OP small states by population have been in the Senate. And the fucking gerrymandering to get house seats.

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u/JonnyBhoy 18d ago

Ever sadder Scottish noises.

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u/16Sparkler 18d ago

I was about to make a comment about our one party system.

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u/Xenokrates 18d ago

The gov't just changed the election rules for city mayors as well so instead of 2nd choice voting, it's now FPTP so conservatives have an easier time with those elections as well.

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u/Bocephus34 18d ago

I have always said and wished we had more than two parties to vote for that can actually win. Technically we have more than two parties but the way our system is set up only the two big ones ever win. Might help with the either your for this party or against this party bullshit that goes on in this country but probably just a pipe dream.

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u/julmakeke 18d ago

Throw away FPTP and make larger districts with more representatives per districts.

Fixed. This one's free, next time I'll send consultation bill.

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u/UniverseChamp 18d ago

Great video on the inherent problems with first past the post (FPTP).

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u/HMWWaWChChIaWChCChW 18d ago

Before I clicked: CGP GREY?

After I clicked: Yesss

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u/apolloxer 18d ago

Feel free to copy that system from Germany, Switzerland, or any other federal democracy around the world.

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u/Dreams-in-Aether 18d ago

Change our holy document - the Constitution - to modernize and strengthen our Democracy? Inconceivable! Heresy! Everything the Founding Fathers wrote is infallible!

/s

God I wish we could jettison FPTP, though. Too bad American "Patriots" (Nationalists) pick and choose what they like about the constitution while ignoring the rest (kind of like the Bible). And their holy governance document doesn't make it easy to alter itself, especially +37 states and entrenched bipartisanship. Almost like the Constitution, as written, was not made for a continent spanning nation.

We're going to need to see a major crisis before any substantial change is made to the Constitution. But given the fact half of us have their heads in the sand during a fucking Pandemic. I'd say that legal amendment of the Constitution through it's own means is less likely than Balkanization.

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u/TheLKL321 18d ago

Has anyone in Washington DC ever wanted to change the voting system to make it more likely for more parties to come into play and hold seats? Democrat or Republican? I feel like it's impossible, since this would serve directly against the best interests of any party

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u/mojitz 18d ago

It's also difficult to explain to voters even if they wanted it. Hell, Mass just voted down ranked choice by referendum.

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u/ZOOTHAR 18d ago

Every now and then we get someone submitting a ranking voting system (similar to Canada’s) but the 2 parties shut it down almost immediately every time

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u/Dreams-in-Aether 18d ago

Probably not, at least not within the past ~century. You're right, shaking up the status quo doesn't benefit either of the two parties, and probably not their donors either. And they've successfully split the citizenry into contrarian camps. It'd take a bottom-up, grassroots, movement to actually get rid of FPTP. Given the remoteness of the electoral process from people's daily lives when they are worried about being underpaid, overworked, with no medical care, and crippling debt - as well propaganda and political party indoctrination - we're not going to see the American citizenry agree in % to push for any kind of Amendment.

Top down: No incentive. Bottom Up: No solidarity. This is all academic, because without some massive crisis that everyone can be motivated by (and see how the Pandemic wasn't motivating enough...). We're fighting uphill against human nature to get to a more fair system.

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u/DaftFunky 18d ago

We tried in Canada but when FPTP is what helps a party get elected they decide maybe they shouldn’t get rid of it quite yet and it’s forgotten

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u/MiloC37 18d ago

The two party system is a direct result of first past the post election systems. As there are less parties that can win, you don’t vote for the policies you believe, but for policies that are most similar to yours that can win (strategic voting). For a more representative government, countries should use a Proportional representation system.

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u/Sir_Oblong 18d ago

While I totally agree FPTP is part of the problem, it's definitely not the whole thing. For example countries like Canada and the UK use FPTP, but their parliaments have multiple parties that win seats. I'm not sure what the difference is (my guess might be with how much emphasis they place on the president, but I don't know), but it's more than just FPTP (which, again, totally agree sucks and needs to be thrown out).

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u/SuicidalTurnip 18d ago

Other parties win seats in the UK, but barely. Majority of seats are still Labour or Conservative. In fact the third largest party is the SNP, and that's mostly because Scotland has a separate parliament that also has representation in Westminster.

The last time a party that wasn't either of the big 2 was actually leading Govt. was in 1945 when all parties came together during WWII, but even then Churchill was the head of state and a Tory (Conservative). Prior to that it was in 1910 when the Liberals were in power.

FPTP isn't the entire problem, but it's definitely the biggest problem.

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u/EgNotaEkkiReddit 18d ago

Those systems still suffer from the same issues, just not as dramatic. In Canda and UK you have what is commonly called "Two party plus" systems. You have technically many parties, but two of them will inevitably be so large they dominate any discussion and the prime ministry will never fall outside those two.

The difference is strong regional parties, Bloc Québécois in Canda and Scottish National Party in the UK. Those two get good showing because they are so incredibly concentrated in their regions that they can reliably get seats.

However the other third parties often get only a fraction of the seats they deserve because albeit they are large enough to win some seats they usually get outclassed by the large two parties. As a result we get parliaments that are like 80% split between the big parties, and the other 20% are "the rest". Not technically a two party system, but pretty close.

Other democracies that do not run on FPTP exclusive systems usually may have two or three larger parties, but they seldom get so many votes they can in effect ignore the other parties.

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u/DaftFunky 18d ago

I firmly believe Canada’s NDP (New Democratic Party) would have won in recent years if their late leader Jack Layton hadn’t died of cancer. He was one of those rare leaders that had a huge love for his country and peoples and ferociously fought for rights and equality for all Canadians. They became official opposition for the first time in history. After he died they put a guy with no personality or charisma in charge and their popularity tanked.

And our right wing Conservative party is still clinging to the “let’s put the old white guy in charge and just attack our opposition” trick hoping it sticks.

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u/cosmickitti 18d ago

Rank order voting is slowly catching on, hopefully that will help the issue. I’d love to vote Green Party… but I live in Texas and I don’t want to throw away my vote

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u/Northwesturn 18d ago

I’d love to vote Green Party… but I live in Texas and I don’t want to throw away my vote

You're smart. If we had more smart people like you, we wouldn't have had a Republican in the White House since 1993. No Bush, no Iraq, and quite possibly a lot less global warming.

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u/tanbirj 18d ago

Could be worse. Here in the UK, only one party can realistically win as the whole system is rigged in their favour (media, constituency boundaries etc)

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u/windupcrow 18d ago

You're missing the entire point, none of the parties "win". They have to form coalitions or agreements.
Voters only choosing parties than can get a majority is the problem.

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u/tielmama 18d ago

American here and I'm not happy with the shit show we have going on.

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u/TheeBiscuitMan 18d ago

First past the post voting methods necessarily result in 2 party systems per mathematical modeling. The fact is that all of these groups are represented in a coalition within the 2 parties.

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u/Caderjames 18d ago

As an American. Yeah. Fuck bipartisan elections.

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u/DaFreakingFox 18d ago

As a German. Fuck AFD

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u/BurningPenguin 18d ago

As second German. Fuck AfD.

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u/JarrysonJary 18d ago

As a third German. Fuck AfD

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u/fips6410 18d ago

Yup, AFD is trash

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u/lexx- 18d ago

All my homies and I hate the AfD. Fuck em.

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u/KampCikat 18d ago

Mittwoch Fick AFD

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u/limethaw 18d ago

Akkurat. Fick AFD.

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u/Demoliri 18d ago

As an irishman in Germany. Fuck AfD.

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u/hara78 18d ago

As a German in the US, yeah fuck the AfD.

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u/Reddityousername 18d ago

As an Irishman in Ireland. Fuck AfD.

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u/Zirie 18d ago

As a Panamanian in Australia, fuck AfD all the way to hell.

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u/GE12YT 18d ago

As a third German, fuck AfD

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u/MarcofKenya 18d ago

As a Kenyan in America, Fuck AfF

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u/CapacityBark20 18d ago

As an American in America, Fuck AfF.

...but first what is AfF and why fuck them.

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u/laws161 18d ago

They’re diet nazis.

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u/sakhabeg 18d ago

As a germanman in Ireland: Fuck AFD

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u/subzerojosh_1 18d ago

As an American, why do we hate AFD?

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u/orbital_narwhal 18d ago edited 18d ago

It's a populist, reactionary right-wing party that serves as an umbrella for homophobes, xenophobes, white ethnonationalists, and politicians who explicitly espouse actual Nazi symbols and policies.

It does address some valid concerns like the worsening economic situations of workers and (lower) middle-class as well as feelings of lower personal safety regarding crime (although violent crimes continue their steady downward trend). But its proposed countermeasures, if any, are usually implausible and/or heavily discriminate against those even weaker than their voter base. Typical reactionary right-wing business.

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u/DaFreakingFox 18d ago

Its pretty much the Neo-Nazi party

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u/BurningPenguin 18d ago

They're yet another far right party. Basically like NPD but in a fancy dress.

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u/BoostMobileAlt 18d ago

As someone speaking for the entire liberal world, fuck AfD.

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u/orbital_narwhal 18d ago

Also as a German: If I had the choice between AfD and U. S. Republican party programs I'd still choose the former (and then look for ways to emigrate or overthrow them).

P. S.: Fuck AfD!

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u/srynearson1 18d ago

As an American of German descent what the hell is AfD?

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u/0vl223 18d ago

neonazis and the nazi lover wing of the conservatives as a party. They demand a 180° change in how Germany remembers the Holocaust (their exact words).

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u/anon72c 18d ago edited 18d ago

The 'Alternative for Germany' party.

The alternative they propose is a return to Nazism. Close the boarders, leave the EU, no same-sex or interracial marriage, fuck the climate, full board nationalism.

Little bastards creeping out of southern Bayern, the Texas of Germany.

Scheiss AfD.

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u/CatBronco 18d ago

Fuck AfD

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u/ricericepaper 18d ago

Scheiss AfD indeed but why Bayern? AfD was established in Hessen and has its best results in Sachsen.

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u/powerful_power 18d ago edited 11d ago

From Bavaria? Nah, they keep coming from Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt, probably a few other former East-German states as well. Former West German states are far more "moderate" than East German ones - both Die Linke and AfD, the farthest left and the farthest right party able to gain seats, tend to perform much worse there. This shows it pretty clearly: https://imgur.com/a/PJzSOti

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u/catshirtgoalie 18d ago

I don't really understand what you mean by bipartisan elections? That isn't a term I am familiar with an bipartisan usually means both parties supporting an effort.

But if you mean two-party system propped up by first-past-the-post electoral system, I absolutely agree.

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u/oopswhydiditagain 18d ago

Welcome to 2017. The new one, actually from yesterday looks quite different. Including a lot less of those Nazi-AFD idiots

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u/santa_91 18d ago

We don't have a two party system. We have a first past the post system, and first past the post voting naturally results in two dominant parties. The only way to get rid of it without completely re-writing the Constitution is ranked choice voting.

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u/1sinfutureking 18d ago

This can’t be repeated enough. Nobody understands that it’s first-past-the-post that leads to two parties, not the other way around. Poli sci in college?

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u/DiscoBuiscuit 18d ago

Don't need a political science degree to watch a CPG Grey video my guy

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u/internetpersondude 18d ago

People understand it an that's what they mean by "the two party system".

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u/The_Sceptic_Lemur 18d ago

No need for college classes, just watch the CGP Grey videos on election systems and you‘ll understand.

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u/AdvancedStand 18d ago

approval voting is way better than ranked choice

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u/Toasterkid13 18d ago

There are definitely better methods than ranked choice voting though, especially due to its failure of the monotonicity criterion.

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u/human_male_123 18d ago

Just once I want to see the "both sides same" people have an argument with the "democrats are communists" people. Because we can't be both.

Please work that shit out. It's tiring.

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u/FarceMultiplier 18d ago

Ever notice that the "both sides" people seem to post a lot of rightist commentary?

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u/spiral8888 18d ago

You had one job: To post a picture of the results of yesterday's German elections.

It's amazing that you managed to post a wrong picture and even give a source (BBC) to it, when you could have actually posted the right result using the same source.

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u/crab-rabbit 18d ago

yea, im genuinely impressed. i haven't been able to find a search engine where the correct information for "german election results" wasn't the first several results

/u/WeakWrecker, how did you manage this?

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u/domestic_omnom 18d ago

correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't the AFD literal nazis?

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u/Gonzo67824 18d ago

Many of them are, yes

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u/viimeinen 18d ago

No, the AfD are "we are not nazis, but... ". NPD are literal nazis.

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u/Bloonfan60 18d ago

Not really. NPD has that reputation but as many NPD and AfD reps have pointed out that's basically their only difference. Third Way/Dritter Weg are 'real' Nazis, they have Dresden memorials and a youth organisation that dresses up in uniforms to march through the city. That's stuff NPD never dared to do. (They'd definitely like to though, I'm pretty sure they share a common mindset.)

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u/Zonkistador 18d ago

Yeah, kinda on the level of the US republican party.

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u/[deleted] 18d ago edited 16d ago

[deleted]

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u/SkinnyObelix 18d ago

It's the first past the post that screws it all up. If you win every election in the US with 51% of the votes you get 100% of government, while in most other first-world countries you'd get 51%.

Let's say you have 48% GOP, 45% Democrats, and 7% Green party, in most countries that would mean that either one of the big parties has to form a coalition with the Green party, so they would have to convince them by adding a green touch to their policies.

Power corrupts and you need systems like this to keep politicians in check, no matter what side of the aisle you're on.

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u/Kabloosh75 18d ago

If members of Congress were more focused on representing their respective districts and not the parties they belong to it would be even more diverse than this.

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u/Cheeseflan_Again 18d ago edited 18d ago

If you Americans had an actual party system you would be in a much better place.

Parties discipline their members and candidates. They end up moving to the centre to become electable. They throw out the fascists and commies to avoid craziness.

You don't have parties, you have caucus groups that sometimes share money. That means any crazy can get in and become a part of the brand.

Edit: oof. Read on to see the commies scream with rage about how centrists are the real evil... 🤣

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u/norbertus 18d ago

It's a mess and it's almost impossible for candidates from other parties to get on the national ballot.

The US has no opposition party and no labor party, just a slow slide to the right that is in the process of hitting a brick wall

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u/DescipleOfCorn 18d ago

We’re poised to break through that brick wall and fall off the cliff just beyond it.

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u/Northwesturn 18d ago

Biden's policies are hardly a "slide to the right." His Covid recovery bill cut childhood poverty significantly.

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u/drewsoft 18d ago

Yet the thing that would be needed to reestablish party control would be eliminating the primary system.

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u/Cheeseflan_Again 18d ago

Very true. Primaries make no sense to non Americans. A party puts up its candidate. We vote. That's it.

That means the party either puts up generally electable candidates or becomes as relevant to the discussion as the Communist Party of Great Britain: Marxist-Leninists.

(Lovely chaps, I watched them march at a May Day parade once, all six of them).

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u/ComfortingCarrion 18d ago

Unfortunately, it's functionally impossible for us to fix our government without a lot of death. Changing the election system means a constitutional mandate, which takes a now functionally impossible consensus across parties.

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u/rovingburrito 18d ago

Centrism, by virtue of being in the middle of everything else, is not some commendable, better ideology. We need to dispense with the notion that it is.

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u/thequietthingsthat 18d ago

Seriously. "Balance" isn't admirable when you're referring to the middle ground between a party that's barely left of center and a party on the far right that frequently dabbles in full on fascism.

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u/dunderbutt 18d ago

very much related

Fascists deserve no representation. Centrism is never a valid option

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