The state & politics



euros was what Germany’s federal budget deficit came to in 2014. While expenditure totalled 296,500 million euros, ­revenue amounted to 296,500 million euros. This was an historic achievement on the part of the ruling Grand Coalition. For the first time in 45 years – since the 1969 budget – central government assumed no new debt.

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Germany is a parliamentary democracy. Its constitutional bodies are the Bundestag, the Bundesrat, the Federal President, the Federal Government, and the Federal Constitutional Court.


Largest federal state
North Rhine-Westphalia (17.6 million inhabitants)
Highest individual federal ministry budget
Labour and Social Affairs 
(122 billion euros)
Largest Bundestag committee
Economic Affairs and Energy (46 members)
Highest turnout
1972 election to the Bundestag (91.1 percent)
Largest parl. party
CDU/CSU (310 MPs)
David Baltzer/Zenit/laif
Political party work is the classic way to become involved, but lots of young people exploit opportunities to participate in local citizens’ groups.
Andreas Pein/laif
The memory of the crimes committed by the Nazis, and of the injustice of the system in the German Democratic Republic is kept alive in numerous memorials in Germany.



In many German and European cities, “Stolpersteine” (stumbling stones) placed in the ground remind passers-by that Jewish citizens who were ­persecuted, murdered, deported, or driven away by the Nazis, once lived or worked in the buildings outside which the stones are placed. The approximately 10 by 10-centimetre ­cube-shaped concrete blocks have a brass top with an inscription in ­memory of the victim bearing his or her name and biographical data.

Election results are generally very closely watched. And underpinning those results are very sophisticated mechanisms which justify the faith Germans put in their electoral system.
Soeren Stache/dpa
A short overview of further information about the state, politics, contemporary history, plus associated links.
Germany has a new head of state. The Federal Convention has elected former Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier as German President.
The German constitution protects the basic rights of every person in Germany. These rights are watched over by Germany’s highest judicial instance, the Constitutional Court.

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