1946 Czechoslovak parliamentary election
All 300 seats to the Constituent National Assembly
151 seats needed for a majority
Parliamentary elections were held in Czechoslovakia on 26 May 1946. The Communist Party of Czechoslovakia emerged as the largest party, winning 114 of the 300 seats (93 for the main party and 21 for its Slovak branch) with 38% of the vote (31 percent for the main party and 6.9 percent for the Slovak branch). This was the best performance for a Czechoslovak party up to that time; previously no Czechoslovak party had ever won more than 25 percent of the vote. Voter turnout was 93.9%. As it turned out, this was one of only two even partially free elections held in what would become the Eastern Bloc, the other having been held in Hungary a year earlier.
Just two years later, the Communists staged a coup d'etat and instituted an undisguised Communist regime. As a result, the 1946 election would be the last free election held in Czechoslovakia until 1990.
The national results also determined the composition of the Slovak National Council and local committees.
After World War II a 300-member interim National Assembly was formed and met for the first time on 28 October 1945. The Assembly created a new electoral system with the country divided into 28 multi-member constituencies. 150 members were elected from Bohemia, 81 from Moravia and Silesia and 69 from Slovakia. The voting age was lowered to 18, but only Czechs, Slovaks and other Slavs could register to vote.
|Date||Polling Firm||KSČ||ČSNS||ČSL||ČSSD||Blank vote||Note|
|April 1946||ÚVVM||39.6||22.5||19.2||16.0||2.7||Only Bohemia and Moravia|
|Communist Party of Czechoslovakia||2,205,697||31.2||93||+63|
|Czechoslovak National Social Party||1,298,980||18.4||55||+27|
|Czechoslovak People's Party||1,111,009||15.7||46||+24|
|Czechoslovak Social Democracy||855,538||12.1||37||–1|
|Communist Party of Slovakia||489,596||6.9||21||New|
|Source: Nohlen & Stöver|
Following the elections, Communist leader Klement Gottwald formed a coalition government. However, the Communists gradually tightened their grip on the country. After the non-Communist members resigned from the Cabinet on 25 February 1948, the Communists seized full control of the country.
- Dieter Nohlen & Philip Stöver (2010) Elections in Europe: A data handbook, p471 ISBN 978-3-8329-5609-7
- Nohlen & Stöver, p472
- Andorka, Rudolf et al. A Society Transformed, p.8. Central European University Press (1999), ISBN 963-9116-49-1
- Kamm, Henry. Now, the Czech Reality; Political 'Amateurs,' After Free Elections, Turn to Problems Left by the Communists. The New York Times, 1990-06-11.
- Nohlen & Stöver, p464
- "Zákon č. 67/1946 sb. o volbě ústavodárného Národního shromáždění" (in Czech). Zakonyprolidi.cz. 18 April 1946. Retrieved 19 August 2017.
- mínění, Ústav pro výzkum veřejného (1946). "Výzkum Volby I. - 3/1946 duben ÚVVM/CVVM". Invenio Nusl (in Czech). Retrieved 26 January 2018.
- Nohlen & Stöver, p457
- Stupka, Jiří (2012). "Parlamentní volby v roce 1946 – odraz na stránkách ústředních tiskových orgánů politických stran" (PDF) (in Czech). Masaryk University. Retrieved 19 August 2017.