2013 Luxembourg general election

Early general elections were held in Luxembourg on 20 October 2013.[1] The elections were called after Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker, at the time the longest serving head of government in the European Union, announced his resignation over a spy scandal involving the Service de Renseignement de l'Etat (SREL).[2][3] The review found Juncker deficient in his control over the service.[3]

2013 Luxembourg general election

 2009 20 October 2013 2018 

All 60 seats in the Chamber of Deputies.
31 seats needed for a majority
Party Leader % Seats ±
CSV Jean-Claude Juncker 33.68 23 -3
LSAP Etienne Schneider 20.28 13 0
DP Xavier Bettel 18.25 13 +4
Greens Christian Kmiotek 10.13 6 -1
ADR Jean Schoos 6.64 3 -1
The Left Collective leadership 4.94 2 +1
This lists parties that won seats. See the complete results below.
Results by constituency
Prime Minister before Prime Minister after
Jean-Claude Juncker
Xavier Bettel
Sample ballot of the "South" constituency.

The elections saw Juncker's Christian Social People's Party lose three seats, but remain the largest party in the Chamber of Deputies with 23 of the 60 seats.


After a spy scandal involving the SREL illegally wiretapping politicians, the Grand Duke and his family, and allegations of paying for favours in exchange for access to government ministers and officials leaked through the press, Prime Minister Juncker submitted his resignation to the Grand Duke on 11 July 2013, upon knowledge of the withdrawal of the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party from the government and thereby losing its confidence and supply in the Chamber of Deputies. Juncker urged the Grand Duke for the immediate dissolution of parliament and the calling of a snap election.[2]

Electoral system

The 60 members of the Chamber of Deputies were elected by proportional representation in four multi-member constituencies; 9 in North constituency, 7 in East, 23 in South and 21 in Centre. Voters could vote for a party list or cast multiple votes for as many candidates as there were seats. Seat allocation was calculated in accordance with the Hagenbach-Bischoff quota.[4]

Voting was compulsory for all citizens between the age of 18 and 75, whilst those over 75 and citizens living abroad were the only ones allowed to vote by post. Failure to vote could have resulted in a fine of between €100 and €250.[4]


Nine parties contested the election, of which five won seats in the Chamber of Deputies at the last election: the Christian Social People's Party (CSV), the Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party (LSAP), the Democratic Party (DP), the Greens, the Alternative Democratic Reform Party (ADR), and The Left.[5] Two extra-parliamentary parties also ran: the Communist Party (KPL) and Pirate Party Luxembourg (PPLU). In addition, the Party for Full Democracy (PID), which was headed by independent deputy Jean Colombera, also contested the election. All parties that ran in the election submitted lists in all constituencies.

List # Party Running in Seats
Centre Est Nord Sud 2009 Pre-election
1 The Left 1 1
2 Alternative Democratic Reform Party (ADR) 4 3[6]
3 Communist Party (KPL) 0 0
4 Democratic Party (DP) 9 9
5 Pirate Party Luxembourg (PPLU) 0 0
6 Greens 7 7
7 Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party (LSAP) 13 13
8 Christian Social People's Party (CSV) 26 26
9 Party for Full Democracy (PID) 0 1[6]

Opinion polls

Published Company CSV LSAP DP The Greens ADR The Left KP Piraten
27.08-13.09.2013 TNS 33% 15% 15% 10% 1% 4% 1% 1%
2009 elections 38.0% 21.5% 15.0% 11.7% 8.1% 3.3% 1.4%  


Christian Social People's Party1,103,63633.6823–3
Luxembourg Socialist Workers' Party664,58620.28130
Democratic Party597,87918.2513+4
The Greens331,92010.136–1
Alternative Democratic Reform Party217,6836.643–1
The Left161,7594.942+1
Pirate Party Luxembourg96,2702.940New
Communist Party of Luxembourg53,6691.6400
Party for Full Democracy49,2901.500New
Valid votes203,55793.18
Invalid/blank votes14,8966.82
Total votes218,453100.00
Registered voters/turnout239,66891.15
Source: Elections in Luxembourg, IFES

By locality

The CSV was the largest party in almost every commune (in orange) — as in all elections since the CSV was founded. The DP was the largest in four (in blue) and the LSAP the biggest in three (red).

As in 2004 and 2009, the CSV won pluralities in each of Luxembourg's four circonscriptions. However, the CSV's performance declined in all circonscriptions from 2009. The CSV held up the best in Centre, where it lost only 3.29% compared to its 2009 result. The CSV's sharpest decline was in Nord, where the party lost 5.91%. It nonetheless held a 10% lead over DP in Nord; Nord was the last constituency to not vote for the CSV at the national level, when the DP beat the CSV by 2% in Nord in 1999. Overall, despite a relative decline, the CSV retained a comfortable lead in all circonscriptions, both in votes and in seats.

By circonscription
Centre 35.31% 14.65% 25.02% 10.46% 5.01% 4.75% 0.86% 2.72% 1.22%
Est 36.90% 14.59% 18.63% 13.10% 8.69% 3.05% 0.79% 2.69% 1.55%
Nord 33.69% 17.22% 23.71% 9.01% 6.36% 2.56% 0.81% 3.37% 3.26%
Sud 32.20% 25.23% 12.76% 10.13% 7.55% 5.70% 2.39% 3.03% 1.35%
Distribution of seats by circonscription
Centre 8 3 6 2 1 1 0 0 0
Est 3 1 2 1 0 0 0 0 0
Nord 4 2 2 1 0 0 0 0 0
Sud 8 7 3 2 2 1 0 0 0

Government formation

Following the elections, the Democratic Party, the Socialist Workers' Party and the Greens began initial talks about forming a coalition (dubbed the "Gambia coalition", after Gambia's flag colours), pushing the Christian Social People's Party into the opposition for the first time since 1979.[7] On 25 October, Xavier Bettel, the leader of the Democratic Party and mayor of Luxembourg City, was named formateur by the Grand Duke of Luxembourg.[8] The negotiations were finished by 29 November, as planned.[9][10] The new Bettel-Schneider Ministry was sworn in on 4 December.[11]


  1. Luxembourg calls early elections after spy scandal Archived 2013-07-19 at archive.today France 24, 19 July 2013
  2. "Luxembourg spying scandal breaks Juncker government". Reuters. 10 July 2013. Retrieved 11 July 2013.
  3. "Luxembourg PM Juncker offers government resignation". BBC News. 11 July 2013. Retrieved 11 July 2013.
  4. Electoral system IPU
  5. The Left is technically not a party, but an electoral alliance.
  6. Jean Colombera was elected as a member of the Alternative Democratic Reform Party in 2009, but left part way through the legislative session to sit as an independent, and ran for Party for Full Democracy in this election.
  7. "DP, LSAP et Déi Gréng feront ménage à trois" [DP, LSAP and The Greens to form a threesome]. L'essentiel (in French). 21 October 2013.
  8. "Xavier Bettel nommé formateur par le Grand-Duc" [Xavier Bettel named formateur by the Grand Duke]. L'essentiel (in French). 25 October 2013.
  9. "Un nouveau gouvernement dans onze jours" [A new government in eleven days]. L'essentiel (in French). 18 November 2013.
  10. "Au Luxembourg, une grande coalition pour tourner la page Juncker". Le Quotidien. 29 November 2013. Archived from the original on 3 December 2013.
  11. "Assermentation des membres du nouveau gouvernement" [Swearing-in of the members of the new government] (in French). Government of Luxembourg. 4 December 2013. Archived from the original on 8 December 2013.