Nazis Don't Gain Power by Winning Elections!

They didn't do it that way in Nazi Germany nor in Ukraine today

 

by John Spritzler

May 11, 2022

[The URL of this article is https://www.pdrboston.org/nazis-don-t-win-power-by-elections ]

Please also read Ukraine: Links to Info re the War

The Nazis in Germany never had a majority vote in the Reichstag (Parliament) and Hitler never won an election. If you dispute this, then provide me the election results you have in mind, OK?

Hitler came to power when President Hindenburg, who defeated Hitler in the election for president, used his constitutional authority to APPOINT Hitler Chancellor, due to the pressure put on him (Hindenurg) to do this from the top capitalist and aristocratic Germans who felt that only Hitler could destroy the working class that was threatening to make a revolution at the time. And indeed, that is exactly what Hitler proceeded to do, first putting the working class leaders (in the Communist Party and Socialist Party) in concentration camps.

Even with his political enemies in concentration camps, when Hitler called new elections the Nazis STILL failed to get a majority. If you dispute this, then show me the contrary election results. You can't, because they don't exist.

I suggest you read about this in William Shirer's famous book, The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich.

The Nazis came to power because a) they were armed and used those arms against their enemies; b) the upper class in Germany wanted them to be in power, which is why it prevailed upon Hindenburg to appoint Hitler Chancellor.

This is how Nazis come to power, including in Ukraine, where they don't get many votes but they (with the backing of the mighty U.S. and the richest Ukrainians) exert control over whomever is elected no matter what reason people voted for them. This is what happened in Ukraine.

Here are some more details I'm adding, all from William Shirer's book, The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich:

In the Reichstag election on Nov 6, 1932--the last free election before Hitler became Chancellor in 1933 and imprisoned his foes--the Nazis lost 34 seats, reducing them to only 196 deputies, while the Social Democratic Party and the Communist Party won a total of 221 seats — 25 more than the Nazis. This was the last free election before Hitler came to power.

This last free election suggests how little support anti-Semitism had in the German electorate. The Social Democratic Party condemned anti-Semitism as "reactionary" and was known for its history of refusing to combine with anti-Semitic parties in election runoffs even when it would have gained from doing so. The Communist Party also rejected anti-Semitism. (In fact the Nazis lumped Communists together with Jews as being all part of the same evil conspiracy.) Votes for these two parties were votes against anti-Semitism, and these two parties combined received MORE votes than the Nazi Party.

After this election the Nazis were in steep decline. The party was literally bankrupt and unable to make the payroll of its functionaries or pay its printers. In provincial elections in Thuringia on December 3, the Nazi's vote dropped by 40 percent. Gregor Strasser, a top Nazi who had lead the party during Hitler's time in prison, concluded that the Nazis would never obtain office through the ballot. In his diary in December, Hitler's right-hand man, Joseph Goebbels, wrote: "[T]he future looks dark and gloomy; all prospects and hope have quite disappeared."

And yet, only one month later, President Hindenburg appointed Hitler Chancellor. Industrialists, bankers, large landowners and the military had pressured Hindenburg to appoint Hitler. They feared the growing strength of the working class and were convinced that only Hitler would do whatever was necessary decisively to defeat workers' power.

The elite feared not only working class votes, but a general strike that could lead to civil war. Two months before Hitler's appointment, General Kurt von Schleicher told the current Chancellor, Franz von Papen, "The police and armed services could not guarantee to maintain transport and supply services in the event of a general strike, nor would they be able to ensure law and order in the event of a civil war." When Hindenburg subsequently dismissed Papen and appointed Schleicher as Chancellor, he told Papen: "I am too old and have been through too much to accept the responsibility for a civil war. Our only hope is to let Schleicher try his luck." Schleicher, responding to the same Great Depression and the same kind of working class militancy that forced FDR to offer Americans a New Deal, tried to pacify the German working class with similar promises, but workers didn't trust him. After just fifty-seven days in office the elite decided that only Hitler could do what had to be done.

Twenty-six days before Hitler's appointment as Chancellor, Baron Kurt von Schroeder, a Cologne banker, had a private meeting with Hitler, three other Nazi leaders, and Papen. During this meeting Papen and Hitler agreed that Social Democrats, Communists, and Jews had to be eliminated from leading positions in Germany, and Schroeder promised that German business interests would take over the debts of the Nazi Party. Twelve days later, Goebbels reported that the financial position of the (previously bankrupt) Nazi party had "fundamentally improved overnight."

Working class Germans not only voted against the Nazis, they fought them in the streets. In the German province of Prussia alone, between June 1 and June 20, 1932, there were 461 pitched street battles between workers and Nazis, in which eighty-two people died and four hundred were wounded.

In his classic account, The Nazi Seizure of Power: The Experience of a Single German Town, William Allen gives a detailed account of events from 1930 to 1935 in a small German rural town with a population of 10,000 mainly middle-class Lutherans.

 

Allen describes a typical incident. Three weeks before the July 31, 1932 Reichstag elections, twenty-five men in the Reichsbanner (a Social Democratic Party militia organization) got into a fight with sixty Nazi SA (militia) men while crossing a bridge in opposite directions. Homeless people in a nearby Army compound rushed to help the Reichsbanner, and when police arrived there was a surging crowd of about eighty persons pelting the Nazis with stones.