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A party with no party (including a free MP or independent ) is someone who exercises or aspires to a political office or mandate but does not belong to a political party . A parliamentarian can often only become non-party after an election , by leaving or being expelled from his party . In Austria , the term wild MP is also used for such cases .

Members of parliament who are not members of any political group are called non-attached members . Independent MPs are not necessarily non-attached and vice versa. Free MPs often form electoral communities or their own faction of the independents .

In most modern democracies which are members of parliaments and members of the government preselected generally of parties and elected with their support, non-party governments are formed only in exceptional situations. Independent candidates are most important where there is majority voting or where party ties are not very strong. In order to be elected without the support of a party, it is usually necessary to be well known among the voters, especially when running against party candidates. As direct candidates in elections, non-party members are usually given fewer opportunities than party members. In federal elections , individual applicants were only able to win constituencies directly in 1949 and thus enter parliament.

Individual applicants can be nominated for local elections in Germany. Therefore, there are more successful non-party members who are often supported or tolerated by parties. Conversely, parties are not compelled to nominate only party members for an election; therefore, non-party members and members of other parties or electoral associations can also be nominated in so-called “ open lists ” . Non-party applicants as individual applicants need support signatures, the number of which are stipulated in the municipal regulations of the federal states, so that they appear on the voting slip.

In the USA and Great Britain there are always independent candidates who are successful. Bernie Sanders , for example, has been a member of the US State of Vermont since 1991 and has represented the state in the Senate since 2007 .

A high political office is rarely held by a non-party member. In most cases, it is then a person who is at least close to a party. Examples are some ministers like Ulrich Nussbaum (2009-2014 Senator for Finance in Berlin) or the eleventh German President Joachim Gauck .

Local political developments in Germany

In the Federal Republic, particularly in local politics, candidates for full-time mayors are increasingly being elected. In Hessen, for example, an association of non-party mayors has been formed. In 2006 and 2007 a federal meeting of independent mayors and district administrators took place in Crimmitschau (Saxony). In 2011, non-party mayors and district administrators meet in Dresden on the occasion of the “Mayors' Day” conference. The trend is particularly clear in the northern German federal states: around a third of the directly elected main administrative officials in Lower Saxony are non-party. In addition, quotas for non-party members are increasingly being set up in the top municipal bodies such as the German Association of Cities and the City Councils of the federal states.

Regardless of the legal definition, it is doubtful in the political science debate whether one should classify local political associations such as civic alliances as well as local electoral communities and their elected representatives in the spectrum of parties or whether they should be classified as party-like organs of local authority formation.

There are non-party mayors in the cities of Freiburg im Breisgau ( Martin Horn ), Hagen ( Erik O. Schulz ), Halle (Saale) ( Bernd Wiegand ), Heidelberg ( Eckart Würzner ), Cologne ( Henriette Reker ), Magdeburg ( Lutz Trümper ) and Rostock ( Claus Ruhe Madsen ).

Well-known politicians without a party


Weimar Republic

Federal Republic




  • Vladimir Putin , president from 1999 to 2008 and since 2012, was chairman of the United Russia party from 2008 to 2012 , but never a member



United States of America

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Independent mayors of Hesse
  2. ^ Federal meeting of independent mayors and district administrators
  3. Mayor's Day
  4. Uwe Andersen: The municipal constitution and decision-making system
  5. ^ Jan Knauer: Citizen engagement and protest policy. The political work of the "Remstal rebel" Helmut Palmer and the reactions of his fellow men (dissertation). Tübingen 2012; online on TOBIAS-lib; P. 69 and 152f.
  6. Homepage: [1] Accessed June 17, 2013
  7. Russian Agency for International Information (RIA Novosti): Is Putin planning a major purge in the Kremlin party? Retrieved January 20, 2009.