762A.00/9–753: Telegram

No. 219
The United States High Commissioner for Germany (Conant) to the Department of State 1


950. (Pre-telecon2 material Washington and Bonn.) Political circles here interpret sweeping Adenauer victory as national endorsement of Chancellor’s foreign and domestic policy and attribute it to his strong leadership3 Most observers agree electorates unwilling to risk change to uncertainties SPD course which they feared would oblige Germany to go it alone. Apparently only traditional SPD voters continue to support the party. Thus vast majority electorate backed continuation of integration with west.

Chancellor is now in such a strong position that he should be able to make concessions to France on Saar issue as part of over-all European integration settlement. Chancellor’s strengthened position [Page 534] should oblige France to make up its mind on European defense.

Most striking domestic consequences are disappearance of small parties and strong trend in direction of two party system with practical elimination of confessional factors which were generally regarded as great obstacle to two party system. Annihilation fanatic elements is encouraging evidence German people have chosen middle road and disavowed extremism. This makes it more difficult for Kremlin to frighten French and British with spectre of resurrection of Nazism in Germany and its main remaining weapon will be old charge that Germany is becoming American colony.

Although Adenauer has wide range of possibilities in forming government, it is generally anticipated that he will again ally himself with FDP and DP plus center. Such a coalition would give him comfortable majority of 310 out of 487. By inclusion of BHE with 27 seats, Chancellor could reach two thirds majority which would make approval of treaties absolutely certain.

CDU victory will undoubtedly enable Adenauer to reestablish progovernment majority in Bundesrat by changing composition of one or more Laender Governments.

Relative decline of SPD is certain to provoke disappointment and confusion within party which may lead to changes in party leadership within next six months.

Official final returns not yet available.

  1. Repeated to London, Paris, and Moscow.
  2. Not further identified.
  3. In the Federal elections on Sept. 6 the CDU won 244 seats, a clear majority of the 487 in the Bundestag, to the SDP 150.