The Reichstag Election November 1932


Map Code: Ax03004

Chancellor Franz von Papen, who was governing by legislative decree, dissolved parliament in September 1932 in order to pre-empt a motion of no confidence from the Communists, which would have been supported by the National Socialists (Nazis). The elections of 6 November 1932 were the last democratic national election until 1949 in West Germany and 1990 in East Germany. In essence, the trends of the July elections towards radicalisation and extremism were not reversed. The National Socialists gained 196 seats (33.1 per cent) and the Communists (KPD) achieved their best ever result, with 16.9 per cent of the vote (100 seats). The Social Democrats (SPD) gained 20.4 per cent of the vote. Communists and National Socialists combined held 296 out of 584 seats, retaining their power of veto in the Reichstag. The Centre (Zentrum) Party lost a small share of its diminishing vote, polling 11.9 per cent, while the DNVP (German National People’s Party) made a gain of 2.7 per cent, bringing its share of the vote to 8.9 per cent. The 4 per cent drop in support for the National Socialists since the July elections was a great disappointment to the Nazis, who failed to find the support for a government coalition in the Reichstag.

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