Although West Germany’s first federal elections did not occur until 1949, the states in the U.S. zone held elections in 1946. OMGUS was concerned about how the Germans would handle their first democratic election since 1933. The Military Government wanted to show the virtues of democratic elections, but was wary of political parties comprised of former Nazis. OMGUS enacted a number of measures to control who could take part in the elections. Germans who remained fervent Nazis were not allowed to join political parties or vote in the elections. Furthermore, political parties with an ultra-conservative (or communist) agenda were either outlawed or subject to investigation.
Box 46, Folder 30, Karl Loewenstein Collection, Amherst College Archives & Special Collections.