Search JTA's historical archive dating back to 1923

Jews Breathe More Freely As Nazi Party Fails to Secure Majority; Emphasize That Fight for Jewish Rig

August 2, 1932
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The Jews of Germany breathed more freely when the final election results, broadcast after midnight, made clear that Adolph Hitler’s National Socialist Party has not gained a majority in the Reichstag. For the second time within four months Hitler’s forecast of dictatorship by the vote of the people has been blasted.

The National Socialists polled 13,732,000 votes of a total of 36,976,000 votes cast, gaining a total of 230 seats. The vote represents an increase of 7,331,210 votes over the Nazi poll of 1930 and a gain of 113 seats.

The Nazis received 37.4% of the total vote cast and even in a combination with the Nationalists allied with Dr. Alfred Hugenberg, who won 41 seats, he cannot hope to control the Reichstag.

Jewish leaders in Germany are pleased with the results of the Reichstag election to the extent that the results failed to give the Nazis a majority.

It is emphasized, however, that the fight for the maintenance of Jewish rights must not be regarded as ended.

The Central Union of German Citizens of the Jewish Faith, in a statement to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency today declared that “the election results confirm that, within the German nation, no majority exists for the desire to deprive Jews of their rights. This, however, means nothing as far as the different political combinations of individual parties are concerned. Should it come to a Nazi-Centre coalition. we are certain that the Centre will energetically combat any open attempts against the Jews.”

The Central Union statement says further that now that the Nazis have become the strongest single party in the Reichstag the Central Union must conduct a stronger campaign against libelous attacks upon the Jews.

The “Juedische Rundschau,” organ of the Zionist Federation, will state editorially tomorrow that the elections prove that the Nazis are not losing their present strength in the Reichstag and that they may become menacing if law projects similar to the Prussian confiscation law come before the Reichstag.

The paper expresses the hope, however, that the Centre Party will always oppose measures aimed against the Jews and that Hitler will be influenced by the reaction of public opinion abroad which has condemned anti-Semitism.

Next to the Nazis the largest deputation in the Reichstag will be composed of the Socialists who won 133 seats, which represents in 1930.

The Catholic Center Party of former Chancellor Bruening gained 76 seats., an increase of 8 votes, while their allies in Bavaria, the Bavarian People’s Party, received 19 mandates, as it did in 1930.

The Communist Party, polling 5,277,000 votes, gained 88 seats, an increase of eleven over its representation in 1930. This is the largest Communist representation in the history of the German Reichstag.

Adolph Hitler’s Party vote exceeded the vote received by Hitler during his presidential candidacy by 300,000.

The strategic position remains in the hands of the Catholic Center Party of former Chancellor Heinrich Bruening, inasmuch as Hitler cannot hope to control the Reichstag not even if he makes an alliance with the Communists and that is considered as a virtual impossibility since the Communists have not in the past allied themselves with any other group. Should the Nazis combine with the Nationalists and the Centre Party, they could easily control the Reichstag. Whether or not Dr. Bruening’s Party will choose an alliance with the anti-Semitic parties is not yet known.

The Jewish population anxiously watched the returns of the elections which were broadcast. It is hoped a month of respite will now ensue since the new Reichstag will not convene before the end of August in all probability.

Recommended from JTA