Parliamentary group (Bundestag)

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The plenary hall of the German Bundestag is divided into parliamentary groups.

The parliamentary groups in the German Bundestag are associations of at least 5% of the members of the Bundestag (see Section 10 (1) GoBT ). They represent the central units of action of the Bundestag and are the political principle of structuring its work.

Legal bases

Fractions are formed from parliamentarians from the same party or from parties that do not compete with each other in the individual federal states . The legal regulations on parliamentary groups are not to be found in the Basic Law , where the legal term is only mentioned once in Art. 53a GG in connection with the joint committee . The conditions of their formation, their tasks and rights are regulated in the Members' Act in Sections 45 to 54 of the AbgG. Further regulations can be found in the rules of procedure of the Bundestag in accordance with Section 45 (2) AbgG .

A group of at least three MPs holding less than 5% of the seats is recognized as a group . They have fewer rights than the political groups, but they have the right to propose, be a member and speak in the committees . Individuals or persons from groups that are not recognized as a group are considered non-attached MPs .


According to Section 46 (1) and (2) AbgG in the German Bundestag, parliamentary groups have (partial) legal capacity . They are not part of the public administration and do not exercise any public authority (see Section 46 (3) AbgG).

Fractions enjoy numerous rights: They are entitled to a meeting room in the premises of the German Bundestag, they provide members of the Council of Elders and receive additional funding for leading the faction.

As an association with partial legal capacity, parliamentary groups can assert parliamentary rights of the Bundestag in their own name . You have the right, for example, to make large inquiries or to request a current hour .

The members of the Bundestag committees and the committees of inquiry are delegated by the parliamentary groups, and the speaking time of the members of the Bundestag is also largely organized through them. Due to their competencies in relation to the career and profiling possibilities of the MPs, in Germany an excessive discipline of parliamentary groups is complained, which stands in the way of the free mandate according to Art. 38 Abs. 1 Satz 2 GG.


The parliamentary groups in the German Bundestag are financed from public funds. The legal basis is a corresponding approach in the federal budget . Most of the funds will be used for wages and salaries of parliamentary group employees. The grant is made up of a basic amount that each parliamentary group receives and a surcharge corresponding to the strength of the respective parliamentary group. In 2020, a total of € 119.4 million was paid to the parliamentary groups in the German Bundestag. The audited accounts of the parliamentary groups are published annually (in August) as a printed matter by the Bundestag.

Parliamentary groups from different parties

The CDU / CSU parliamentary group is an example of a parliamentary group whose members belong to different parties. The CSU can only be elected in Bavaria and the CDU only in the rest of the federal states. The two parties do not compete with each other and can therefore form a common parliamentary group in the Bundestag.

The Left faction existed until the accession of the WASG to the left of members of the Left Party and the WASG and some non-party . However, the two parties did not compete against each other anywhere in Germany for the federal election, but rather as a joint electoral list . However, the WASG regional associations Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and Berlin ran against the respective PDS regional associations in their federal states in state parliament and parliamentary elections. There were concerns that this approach could have deprived the joint parliamentary group of its very existence.

In the first Bundestag there was from December 1951 with the Federal Union another faction of several non-competing parties: Bavaria Party , Center Party and SSW .

Political groups can also host MPs from other parties or MPs from outside parties as guests.

Archives of the political groups

The documents of the parliamentary groups in the German Bundestag are kept in the archives of the party-affiliated foundations .

Current and former political groups

Fractions and groups in the German Bundestag since 1949

Narrow bars indicate groups .

Föderalistische Union Deutsche Konservative Partei – Deutsche Rechtspartei Wirtschaftliche Aufbau-Vereinigung (Partei) Deutsche Zentrumspartei Bayernpartei Kommunistische Partei Deutschlands Gesamtdeutscher Block/Bund der Heimatvertriebenen und Entrechteten Deutsche Partei Fraktion der Freien Demokraten SPD-Bundestagsfraktion CDU/CSU-Fraktion im Deutschen Bundestag Bundestagsfraktion Bündnis 90/Die Grünen Fraktion Die Linke im Bundestag AfD-Fraktion im Deutschen Bundestag

In order to form a parliamentary group, ten MPs were required up to December 1951 / January 1952, then 15 MPs. At the beginning of the 6th electoral term on March 27, 1969, this hurdle was raised to 5% of the members of the Bundestag. There were 26 MPs, as of October 3, 1990 34 MPs. From 2002 to 2009 31 MPs were required and from 2009 to 2017 32 MPs. Due to the increase to 709 members in the 19th German Bundestag, 36 members are required to form parliamentary groups from 2017 to 2021.

Current political groups

Former political groups

  • DP parliamentary group September 1949 to July 1960 (parliamentary group status lost)
    • December 1951 to December 1952 DP / DPB parliamentary group
    • March 1957 to September 1957 DP / FVP parliamentary group
    • DP group , July 1960 to May 1961 (dissolved after party merger with GB / BHE for GDP )
  • FVP Bundestag parliamentary group June 1956 to March 1957 (merger with DP parliamentary group)
    • March 1956 Working Group of Free Democrats
    • March 1956 to June 1956 Democratic Working Group
  • KPD parliamentary group , September 1949 to December 1951 (parliamentary group status lost)
    • KPD group January 1952 to September 1953 (left the Bundestag)
  • Fraction of the Federal Union , December 1951 to September 1953 (left the Bundestag)
  • Fraction of the Center , September 1949 to December 1951 (merged to form the Fraction of the Federal Union)
  • BP parliamentary group September 1949 to December 1951 (merged to form the parliamentary group of the Federal Union)
  • WAV parliamentary group , September 1949 to October 1950 (group status lost, partial transfer to the BHE / DG group)
    • WAV group , October 1950 to December 1951 (partial transfer to the DP / DPB parliamentary group) and April 1953 to September 1953 (left the Bundestag)
  • GB / BHE parliamentary group September 1953 to September 1957 (left the Bundestag)
    • German community bloc of expellees and disenfranchised (BHE / DG ), October 1950 to March 1952 (transfer to DP / DPB parliamentary group)

Former groups

See also

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Paul Kevenhörster: Fraktion , In: Uwe Andersen / Wichard Woyke (Hrsg.): Concise dictionary of the political system of the Federal Republic of Germany . 7th updated edition Heidelberg: Springer 2013.
  2. BVerfGE 80, 188
  3. Cash payments to the parliamentary groups. In: data manual. German Bundestag, 2021, accessed on September 26, 2021 .
  4. A current printed matter can be found in: BT-Drs. 18/2380 .