Angela Merkel resigns. Corona upsets life as we know it. The climate crisis is becoming more and more apparent. For many people, these may have been reasons to make a different decision than before when making this choice. On the basis of surveys before and on election day, survey institutes can show more precisely how the parties performed in certain societal and social groups.
The Union is losing even among the elderly
If you look at the different age groups, the Union has lost significantly everywhere compared to the 2017 federal election. The party has fewer supporters not only among the younger generation, but also among the older generation. Only 34 percent in the over-60s group, a loss of seven percentage points.
The SPD is winning particularly strong there: 35 percent of this age group voted for the Social Democrats, in 2017 it was 11 percentage points less. The SPD and the Union are almost on par in this age group. Traditionally, the CDU and CSU were much more successful with older people.
The older the SPD and the Union are, the more voters they reach, while the Greens and FDP lose supporters as they grow older. In 2017 this wasn’t so clearly visible.
The party of young people is the Greens. 22 percent of those under 30 supported Annalena Baerbock’s party. 20 percent voted for the FDP. Both of them gain significantly compared to 2017.
The AfD is mainly elected by 30 to 60-year-olds, but records losses in all age groups. On the left, there is little difference between age groups. For people over 45, the party would not even exceed the five percent hurdle.
The AfD mainly addresses men
For women, the SPD is clearly the strongest force, followed by the Union. The gap is smaller for men. The Union loses in both groups, the SPD wins. The Greens landed third among women with 17 percent, six percentage points more than in 2017. For men, the FDP and Greens share third place with 14 percent. While only eight percent of the women surveyed voted for the AfD, it is at least twelve percent for men. The left scores equally low in both groups.
The strongest party among people with a university degree are the Greens, with voters of all other educational qualifications the SPD would win the election. Compared to 2017, the Greens gained in people with all educational qualifications, particularly strongly in those with a university degree. 26 percent of these voters voted for the Greens, four years ago it was only 17 percent.
The SPD wins the most among people with a high school diploma, 36 percent of voters from this group have chosen the SPD. Union and AfD lose in all educational groups. The left would only exceed the five percent hurdle for people with a high school diploma. In 2017 this was still the case in all educational groups. As in 2017, the FDP was more likely to convince people with a university degree.
The SPD can win again with the workers
Among the workers, the SPD succeeds in returning to strength it had previously believed to be lost. It will be the strongest force with 29 percent. A clear gain over the previous federal election. The Union comes in second, with 23 percent followed by the FDP (10 percent). The AfD can also reach many workers, it ends up at 16 percent. The left cannot win anything even in this group, they get five percent here.
It looks similar with the employees. There, however, the Greens land in third place with 17 percent.
Despite losses, the Union remains the strongest party among civil servants. The SPD and the Greens are very close at 24 and 23 percent. The Greens are the strongest in this group of all professions, the AfD achieved its worst result. The left slips under the five percent hurdle.
As expected, the FDP achieves its best result among the self-employed, and the Union is also very strong in this group. The SPD and the Greens only achieve 17 and 16 percent. The AfD achieved its second-best result, but only nine percent. Even in this group, the left would not be represented in parliament.
The survey institutes publish the forecasts on the evening of the election based on their so-called exit polls. They also collect information about who voted for which socio-demographic groups. In the past, voters were asked for this on election day, immediately after they had cast their vote. The Elections Research Group used this method to survey over 41,000 voters on this election Sunday. Because a historically high postal vote rate was to be expected in the 2021 federal election, telephone surveys with over 1,300 respondents before election day are also included in this data.