Check Politik: Luxembourg elects its parliament

Authors: klaro, Zentrum fir politesch Bildung

Financial support: Ministry of Education, Children and YouthMinistry of Family Affairs, Integration and the Greater Region


  1. Democracy
  2. Electing the Chamber of Deputies        
  3. Before the election
  4. Who can be a candidate?
  5. Who can vote?
  6. How to vote
  7. After the election
  8. Dictionary

1. Democracy


Democracy means: the people decide.

The people are the inhabitants, or citizens, of a country. They vote for their representatives.

These are the politicians who take decisions for our country.

These representatives are called deputies or members of parliament.


People with disabilities also vote.

The right to vote is a very important right. By voting, you can have a say in politics.


Elections in Luxembourg are free.

That means, you are free to decide which party and which candidates to vote for.

You can choose between several parties.


Elections in Luxembourg are secret. You decide who you vote for.

You do not have to tell anyone who you vote for.


All votes count equally.

No matter how old you are, where you come from or how much money you have.


In Luxembourg there are various elections:

  • Municipal elections
  • National elections
  • European elections
  • Social elections (election of staff-representatives within a company)


This booklet is about national elections.

National elections are also called national elections or legislative elections.

In Luxembourg, we often say Chamber-Walen. National elections are held every 5 years.

2. Electing the Chamber of Deputies

Who is elected?

In a national election you vote for the members of parliament.

In Luxembourg the parliament is called the Chamber of Deputies.

Parliament or Chamber is the name for the group of people who work in this building.

You can also say: deputies (delegates). There are 60 deputies.

There are men and women.


In the Chamber there should be deputies from all parts of Luxembourg. That is why there are voting districts.

Voting districts are parts or regions of Luxembourg.

Voters can only vote for candidates who live in their voting district.

Voters can only vote for candidates who live in their voting district.

The difficult word for voting district is constituency.

The voting districts in Luxembourg


Carte du Luxembourg avec les circonscriptions électorales

There are 4 voting districts in Luxembourg:

  • South: 23 deputies
  • Centre: 21 deputies
  • North: 9 deputies
  • East: 7 deputies


In each constituency there are different candidates to choose from.

In total 60 deputies are voted for





What the Chamber of Deputies does

The deputies are members of the Chamber of Deputies.

They vote on laws.

Laws are rules.

Laws apply to everyone in Luxembourg.

For example: The deputies vote on the laws on working conditions.

Deputies can propose new laws.


Deputies control the government.

The government must tell the deputies what it has done and what it would like to do.


The deputies vote on new agreements with other countries.


The deputies vote on the budget.

The budget is a plan or document.

It says how much money the government can spend, and where the money will come from.

For example: How much money the government spends on a new hospital.

You can also see where the money will come from for this project.


When all deputies meet together,

this is called a plenary session or plenum. Plenary sessions are public.

This means, anyone can go to a plenary session in the Chamber of Deputies.

You can also watch the sessions on Chamber TV on television or on the Internet page of the Chamber of Deputies

3. Before the election

The election programs of the political parties

A party is a group of people who have similar political ideas and goals. They put themselves on a joint list for the election.


Each party writes an election program. The election program says:

  • what the party wants to do differently if it is elected into government.
  • how the party wants to achieve these goals.

For example, one party says:

‘There are too many traffic jams in Luxembourg.’

In the election program the party explains what it plans to do to solve this problem. Perhaps they want the trains to drive more often.

In this way, the party hopes that more people will take the train.

And there will be less traffic jams.


The election campaign

Before the election, the parties advertise the ideas of their party. The parties also present their candidates.

This is the election campaign.


The election campaign must respect the rules.

‘Election campaign’ means discussions and publicity to tell people about the election program.

Each candidate can give their opinion.

Each candidate respects the opinion of the other candidates of the other parties.


Information can also spread quickly on the Internet, but sometimes it is wrong.

This is known as ‘fake news’.

It is always good to ask yourself:

‘Is what I read true or false?’

Election promises

During the election campaign the parties explain their goals.

For example, they say:

When we are in government,

  • we will do more to protect animals.
  • we will help young people to find work.

These are called election promises.

Sometimes the parties cannot keep their promises.

For example:

  • when other parties form part of the government.
  • when the parties in the government have different goals.
  • when there is less money than was expected.
  • when something unexpected happens.
  • when the election promises are not realistic.

Sometimes the promises are difficult to fulfil. That is why you should ask how each party plans on fulfilling their promises.

4. Who can be a candidate?

To be a candidate means to stand for election.

This is called passive electoral right. You can be elected.


To be a candidate, you have to:

  • be of legal age: you are of legal age or an adult from the age of 18.
  • have Luxembourgish nationality. In other words: have a Luxembourgish identity (ID) card.
  • possess your civil rights. In other words: the judge did not limit your civil rights. The judge has not forbidden you to vote.
  •  have permanent residency in Luxembourg. In other words: you must be registered in Luxembourg.


Being elected means that the candidate can be a deputy.

Elected candidates can be deputies and continue to work at their job.

There are exceptions, though.

You cannot be a deputy and at the same time have a paid job with the state or a municipality.

If the candidate becomes a deputy, then they must give up their job with the state or municipality.

The deputy receives his salary directly from the Chamber of Deputies.

5. Who can vote?

To vote is called active electoral right. To vote, you must:

  • be of legal age: you are of legal age or an adult from the age of 18.
  • possess your civil rights. In other words: the judge did not limit your civil rights. The judge has not forbidden you to vote.

Luxembourg nationals must vote. It is obligatory and the law says so.

From the age of 75 you can still vote. But you are no longer obligated to.


What does ‘must’ vote mean?


You have 2 possibilities:


You go to the election office. You ask for the ballot paper. You enter the voting booth.

You decide to vote or not to vote for candidates.

Voting means: making a cross for a candidate or a political party. Even if you do not make a cross,

you still have to hand in the ballot paper.


But it is important to make crosses.

This way you participate in the vote for the Chamber of Deputies. You make crosses next to the candidates you prefer.

In other words: the candidates who best represent what you think is important.


If you are ill on election day, you must excuse your absence in writing. You must send your excuse in writing to the municipality.

You must give a reason.


If you want to have a say on who is elected into the Chamber of Deputies, then it is important to put a cross or crosses.

6. How to vote

The letter of invitation

Before the election you receive an envelope by post. The envelope contains the following:

The invitation:

With this letter you are asked to participate in the elections.

In the invitation you will also find:

  • when and where to vote,
  • the opening hours of the election office,
  • how many deputies can be elected.

The instructions: These are the rules for the voter

An example of a ballot paper with all the candidates. You receive the real ballot paper at the election office.


Letter of Invitation

The postal vote

You can vote at an election office.

You can also choose to vote by post.

The application is possible from 12 weeks before the elections and at the latest:

•  25 days before the elections if the ballot paper is sent to an address in Luxembourg or

•  40 days before the election if the ballot paper is sent to an address abroad.


You must apply to vote by post at your municipality or on the web page:

This means, you must fill in a form either on paper or on the web page. You must write an address on the form.

You can find the form at the municipal office and on the Internet.

Voters abroad must add to their application :

a copy of their identity card or passport to their application.


You must send the form to the municipal office or online to


You then receive a ballot paper by post.

The letter will be sent to the address written on the request form.


In the letter you will find:

  • the invitation
  • voting instructions
  • an example of the ballot paper
  • the proper ballot paper which you send back
  • 2 empty envelopes

You vote and send the valid ballot paper by post to the municipality.

How to make a decision

Voting means choosing and taking a decision. You cannot vote for all the candidates.

You have to make a choice.


Find out:

Which parties are there?

What do the parties want to change?

What are the ideas of the different parties? Who is a candidate?

This means: who can you vote for?

What plans do the candidates from your constituency have?


The parties give information about their election program:

  • The parties put their election program in your letter box.
  • The parties post information on their websites and on social media (Facebook, Instagram, …).
  • The parties have information stands. You can ask the candidates questions.
  • The parties hang up campaign posters.


On television, radio and the Internet

there are reports about the parties.

Television and radio organise discussions with the candidates.


A lot of parties organise information meetings or other activities for the inhabitants.

It is a good opportunity to get to know the candidates. Everyone can participate in these meetings.

Everyone can ask questions and give their opinion.


Ask the candidates:

‘What is important to you? What do you stand for?’

The ballot paper

On the ballot paper, or voting slip, you vote for the candidates or a party.


Option 1:

You vote for one party.

This means: You give all your votes to one party. You blacken the circle above the list of your choice. In other words, you colour the circle in black.

Or you draw a cross in the circle: + or x. Each person on the list then receives 1 vote.

Please note: You can no longer make crosses next to the candidates.


Example of a ballot paper:

In the North voting district, 9 deputies are elected for the Chamber of Deputies.

= 9 votes.

On each list there are 9 candidates.

The voter can blacken or mark a circle with a cross above 1 list.

Bulletin de vote: liste

Option 2:

You vote for candidates.

You put crosses for candidates in as many boxes as you have votes. This means: you put a cross for those candidates,

who best represent your ideas.

You can put a cross in 1 or 2 boxes after a candidate’s name.

If you only vote for candidates from one list, this is called cumulation. If you vote for candidates from several lists,

this is called mixed allocation.


Important: In total, you cannot put more crosses than the number of votes you can give.

You can put fewer crosses, though.


The number of boxes you can cross depends on your constituency.

If you live in the South, you have 23 votes.

If you live in the Centre, you have 21 votes.

If you live in the North, you have 9 votes.

If you live in the East, you have 7 votes.

Bulletin de vote: panachage

The rules for the ballot paper to be valid:

  • The voter may only put as many crosses as there are deputies to be elected.
  • He may only put a cross in the boxes or in the circle.
  • He must not strike out anything, write anything, draw anything. He must not leave any trace that allows to identify the voter. For example: a signature.
  • The ballot paper must not be accompanied by any other piece of paper or any other object.
  • The voter may only hand in the real ballot paper and nothing else.

Other rules:

You can only vote once.

You cannot vote for another person.

If you break these rules, you may face a fine or a prison sentence.


You will receive a sample ballot paper at home. You can practice on the sample ballot paper,

to help you prepare for the election.

You can take the sample ballot paper into the voting booth as a memory aid.

However, you may not hand in the sample ballot paper.

You may only hand in the real ballot paper which you were given at the election office.


Important: If you make a mistake,

you can ask the staff of the election office for a new ballot paper. The staff of the election office will destroy the old ballot paper.


Anyone with a disability can take an assistant into the voting booth with them. This is the law.

The assistant must not influence the voter.

This means, the voter alone decides who they want to vote for. The assistant must keep the vote secret.

A blind person or a person with a visual impairment can use a tactile ballot paper as a help to vote.

On election day

You can go to the election office between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m.

You show your identity card or passport

You receive the ballot paper with the names of the candidates.

The vote is secret.

That is why you go into the voting booth.

You should not show anyone who you are voting for.


In the voting booth you will find a pencil.

You can also use your own pencil.

You mark the candidates or the list.

Do not draw anything else on the ballot paper.


If you make a mistake, ask for another ballot paper from the person in charge of the election office.


Fold the ballot paper as it was in the beginning.

The stamp should be on the outside.


Go to the staff of the election office.

They will show you a box. This is the ballot box.

Show the stamp on the ballot paper. Put the ballot paper in the ballot box.


The election office closes at 2 p.m. The staff of the election office count the votes.

7. After the election

The election offices close at 2 pm.

The staff of the election office, take the ballot papers

out of the ballot box and count the votes. Candidates may send someone to observe the count.

There are reports on the elections on television and the Internet.

The first results will be announced in the evening.

On the day after the elections, the full results are known.

The result is shown in the newspapers, on television and on the Internet.

For example, on the official website

Election outcome:

who gets into the Chamber of Deputies?

In the Chamber of Deputies there are 60 deputies. That means there are 60 seats.

Each voting district has a certain number of seats:

North: 9 seats, East: 7 seats, South: 23 seats, Centre: 21 seats. See page 5 for information on the voting districts and seats.


The party with the most votes, gets the most seats.

The candidates with the most votes in the party get these seats.

An example:

A party gets 5 seats in the Centre voting district. And 3 seats in the South voting district.

But no seats in the North and East voting districts.

This party can therefore send 8 candidates to the Chamber of Deputies.


These are then the 8 candidates with the most votes in their party and in their voting district.

This is the same for every party.


The elected candidates now represent us in the Chamber of Deputies.

They are the deputies who represent the people of Luxembourg.

This is the case until the next national election in 5 years.


Until then, every citizen can watch what is happening:

Are the parties really doing what they promised to do before the election?

If you are not happy with what they are doing, at the next national election you can vote for another party or another politician.

The coalition

Each party wants to win votes in the Chamber of Deputies. To win these votes, the party needs a majority.

This means more than half of the deputies.


Often, a single party does not have enough deputies, or seats, to have the majority.

This means the deputies from a single party cannot win a vote on their own.

That is why several parties come together.

This means 2 or more parties come together to form a coalition.


This coalition then forms the government. The parties sign a coalition contract.

In this coalition contract, the parties state their objectives.

The opposition: the opposing party

The parties which have fewer votes form the opposition.

Together they have less than half the votes in the Chamber of Deputies.

This opposition party is also important.

All deputies control the government.

They watch what the government is doing very closely. They question whether that makes sense for the country.


After 5 years there is a new election.

Generally, the opposition wants to win the next election.


The government

After the election, the Grand Duke appoints the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister is the head of government.


He is helped by several men and women. These are the ministers.

The prime minister chooses the ministers.

He comes to an agreement with the other parties in the government. However, the Grand Duke appoints the ministers.

Generally, the ministers are mostly people

who have been elected to the Chamber of Deputies. They can also be experts who know something very well.

The ministers are men and women.

They almost always come from the coalition parties. Each minister has their own task.

For example, there is a Minister of Health.

The Minister of Health is responsible for hospitals. If you are a minister, you cannot be a deputy.

The government can propose new laws.

The deputies in the Chamber of deputies vote on the laws. Only then can the government implement the laws.


The government proposes to build a new school.

The majority of deputies in the Chamber vote in favour.

Now the government has to do everything so that the school can be built.

For example, they have to pay for the construction of the school.

8. Dictionary


The words voter, minister, deputy, etc. refer to men and women




Plan or document in which it is stated how much money the state spends and how much it receives.

ballot paper

Bulletin de vote


The paper showing the names of the persons or parties who can be elected.




People who wish to be elected. Their names are on the ballot paper.

Chamber of Deputies

Chambre des Députés


The Chamber of Deputies is the parliament of Luxembourg.

voting district

Circonscription électorale


Region in Luxembourg that jointly elects some of the deputies to the Chamber of Deputies.

There are 4 voting districts: Centre, South, North, East.


Citoyen Bierger


The inhabitants of a village, a municipality, a country.

If you are at least 18 years old, you may or must vote.

In national elections, only people with Luxembourgish nationality can vote or be a candidate.

Luxemburgish citizen

Citoyens luxembourgeois

Lëtzebuergesch Staats-Bierger

Citizens with a Luxembourgish identity card or passport.

They have the Luxembourgish nationality.





In a coalition there are parties who work together.

Together they form the government. Together they have more than half the seats.





This letter asks you to go and vote.




The people elected into parliament (Chamber of Deputies).

They represent the citizens of the country. Another word: members of parliament.

They discuss suggestions for new laws by the government (ministers).

They can also make proposals for new laws. They vote on whether or not a law will be made.


right to vote

Droit de vote


You can vote or elect candidates.

In principle, every Luxembourg citizen who is at least 18 years old has to vote. For municipal and European elections there are exceptions.

Non-Luxembourg nationals also have the right to vote.

But they must fulfil certain requirements.




Inhabitant who is registered on the electoral roll. In a national election, only people with Luxembourgish nationality can vote.

Fake News

False information, false news.




The government runs the country. The government consists of ministers. The ministers have different areas of responsibility.

Grand Duke



Head of State of Luxembourg. The Grand Duke seeks advice to appoint the Prime Minister.

He represents Luxembourg abroad.

Political group

Groupe politique


The name given to a group of deputies. Only deputies can be members of a political group (Fraktioun).




The elected candidates have the mission to represent the citizens of the country.

tactile voting aid

Modèle de vote tactile


A tactile aid for the blind and severely visuallyimpaired people.

These aids can be ordered from :

the Centre pour le développement des compétences relatives à la vue :




Parliament represents the interests of the citizens.

In Luxembourg parliament is called ‘Chamber’. In German parliament is called ‘Abgeordneten- Kammer‘.




People who have similar political ideas and objectives.

For the elections, they put themselves together on a common list.

Assembly of the deputies. Full assembly.

Prime Minister

Premier ministre

Premier-Minister, Premier

The Prime Minister is the head of government. He assembles the government.

He proposes the ministers. However, the Grand Duke appoints the ministers.

plenary session

Séance plénière


It is public: anyone can go and listen.

The plenary sessions are shown on television and on the Chamber of Deputies’ website.

ballot box

Urne électorale


You put your ballot paper into the ballot box. The ballot box is also called a voting box.

electoral duty

Vote obligatoire


Also called compulsory voting.

This means you have to hand in a ballot paper.

vote by post

Vote par correspondance


You must apply to vote by post :

at the municipality or on

The voter receives the ballot paper by post. He votes and returns the ballot paper by post.

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