their ballots after the country’s federal election czar filed an
official complaint over irregularities in a parliamentary vote held two
Berliners decide the makeup of the German parliament, the Bundestag, as
well as select city representatives – was marred by irregularities at
numerous polling stations, according to the official, Georg Thiel.
the most common problems were ballot shortages and long lines, with
waiting times of up to two hours. In some cases, voters were also seen
casting their ballots past a 6pm cutoff – the time when all polling
stations were supposed to have closed. Thiel, who was tasked with
overseeing elections at federal level, saw all of the above as reason
enough to raise an objection in the German capital, local media reported on Friday.
Thiel identified six Berlin constituencies where irregularities were
allegedly rampant, potentially setting the stage for a re-do election in
It is now up to a special Bundestag committee to
examine Thiel’s complaint and see if the reported violations ran afoul
of German law or electoral procedures. For the vote to be repeated,
however, at least one of those violations would have to be deemed
serious enough to have affected the distribution of seats in the
The September 26 election saw outgoing Chancellor
Angela Merkel’s conservatives take a historic beating, with the Social
Democrats coming out on top. The Social Democratic Party (SPD) has been
engaged in coalition talks with the Greens and the Free Democratic Party
ever since, with the trio expected to announce a preliminary deal as
early as next week.