Elections in Germany

Election day in Germany. When Germans go to the polls to elect a new Bundestag, or parliament, they're being asked to reshuffle the political balance in the country as they see fit. The German electorate, which includes Germans living abroad, get to vote for the parties of their choice about once every four years. Elections are one of the pillars of the German constitution. They have to be universal, free, direct, fair, and the ballot has to be secret. The results are binding, they're then discussed and implemented. Everything goes off without a hitch and doesn't seem especially difficult. But why is that? After all, we shouldn't take it for granted - 60 million people with very different opinions deciding on how power in their country is distributed. The federal returning officer bears the main responsibility. He oversees a system organized down to the very last detail.