Germany's Political System
Germany is a democratic, federal and social constitutional state, peacefully reunited since 1990. The primacy of the basic rights, the definition of the principles of a democratic and social federal state, and the foundation of a supreme court that watches over adherence to the constituion - these are the basic cornerstones of German democracy.
The Federal President (in German: "Bundespräsident") is Germany's head of state. He is the constitutional organ which represents the Federal Republic of Germany both at home and abroad.
The New German President
Germany has a new head of state. The Federal Convention has elected former Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier as German President.
The Federal Chancellor (in German: "Bundeskanzler" or "Bundeskanzlerin") is the only member of the Federal Government to be elected by the parliament. He/She forms the cabinet and is the head of government. He/She issues the guidelines for politics and bears the responsibility for government. Angela Merkel, elected in 2005, is the 8th German Chancellor.
Federal Chancellor's Official Website
The Federal Chancellor and the Federal Ministers form the Federal Cabinet. The Federal Chancellor chairs the weekly Federal Cabinet meetings. Currently 6 of the 15 Federal Ministries are headed by female ministers.
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The German Parliament - Bundestag
The Bundestag ist the elected representation of the German people. As Germany’s parliament, the German Bundestag stands at the centre of the country’s political life and is its supreme democratic organ of state. Since 1999, the Bundestag has had its seat at the Reichstag Building in Berlin. The current 16th German Bundestag has 612 Members. Members of the German Bundestag are elected in general, direct, free, equal and secret elections. Members of parliament are representatives of the whole people, not bound by orders or instructions and only responsible to their conscience.
Bundestag's Official Website
The German Basic Law
The Basic Law, entering into force in May 1949, has set out the fundamental legal and political order of the Federal Republic of Germany. This Basic Law was later in 1990 adopted as the constitution of the present-day unified Germany.
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