1938 German parliamentary election and referendum

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German parliamentary election, 1938

← 1936 10 April 1938
4 December 1938
West 1949 →
East 1949 →

All 813 seats in the Reichstag
407 seats needed for a majority
Turnout99.50% Increase 0.5 pp
  Majority party
  Adolf Hitler 1936 (foto carnet).jpg
Leader Adolf Hitler
Leader since 29 July 1921
Last election 741 seats, 98.80%
Seats won 813 (Sole legal party)
Seat change Increase72
Popular vote 48,751,587
Percentage 98.93%
Swing Increase0.13%

Chancellor before election

Adolf Hitler


Adolf Hitler

Parliamentary elections were held in Germany (including recently annexed Austria) on 10 April 1938.[1] They were the final elections to the Reichstag during Nazi rule and took the form of a single-question referendum asking whether voters approved of a single list of Nazis and pro-Nazi "guest" candidates for the 813-member Reichstag as well as the recent annexation of Austria (the Anschluss). Turnout in the election was officially 99.5% with 98.9% voting "yes".[2] In Austria official figures claimed 99.73% voted in favour with a turnout of 99.71%.

The elections were held largely to rally official support from the new Ostmark (Austrian) province, although further elections for 41 seats were held in the recently annexed Sudetenland on 4 December.[1] NSDAP candidates and "guests" officially received 97.32% of the votes.[3]

The new Reichstag, the last of the German Reich, convened for the first time on 30 January 1939, electing a presidium headed by incumbent President of the Reichstag Hermann Göring. It convened only a further seven times, the last on 26 July 1942. On 25 January 1943, Hitler postponed elections for a new Reichstag until after the war, with the inaugural to take place after another electoral term, subsequently on 30 January 1947—by which point the body, and the Nazi state, had ceased to exist. They were the final elections held in a unified Germany prior to 1990 after German reunification.[4]


Ballot reading: "Do you approve of the reunification of Austria with the German reich accomplished on 13 March 1938 and do you vote for the list of our Führer, Adolf Hitler?"


Party Votes % Seats
National Socialist German Workers Party (including blank votes) 44,451,092 99.01 813
Against 443,023 0.91
Invalid 69,890 0.08
Total 44,964,005 100 813
Registered voters/turnout 45,149,952 99.59
Source: Direct Democracy


Choice Votes %
For 4,453,912 99.73
Against 11,929 0.27
Invalid/blank votes 5,777
Total 4,471,618 100
Registered voters/turnout 4,484,617 99.71
Source: Direct Democracy


Ballot for the Sudeten election, carried out on 5 December after the annexation of the Sudetenland. It would be the last election under Nazi rule.
Party Votes % Seats
National Socialist German Workers Party 2,464,681 98.68 41
Against 32,923 1.32
Invalid/blank votes
Total 2,497,604 100 41
Registered voters/turnout 2,532,863 98.90
Source: Nohlen & Stöver


  1. ^ a b Dieter Nohlen & Philip Stöver (2010) Elections in Europe: A data handbook, p762 ISBN 978-3-8329-5609-7
  2. ^ Nohlen & Stöver, p779
  3. ^ Zimmermann, Volker: Die Sudetendeutschen im NS-Staat. Politik und Stimmung der Bevölkerung im Reichsgau Sudetenland (1938–1945). Essen 1999. ISBN 3-88474-770-3
  4. ^ Max Domarus (2007) The Essential Hitler: Speeches and Commentary, Bolchazy-Carducci, p292

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