List of political parties in Switzerland

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Political positions of the Swiss political parties based on their referendum voting recommendations, 1985–90 and 2010–14

This is a list of political parties in Switzerland.

Switzerland has a multi-party system. Since 1959, the four largest parties have formed a coalition government, according to a Zauberformel or "magic formula". This arithmetic formula divides the seven cabinet seats among representatives of the four largest parties.[1]

Political parties in Switzerland[edit]

Federal and cantonal parliaments[edit]

The following parties are represented either in the Swiss Federal Assembly as of March 2016[2] or in cantonal parliaments and executive councils. For their names in the 4 national languages of Switzerland, see #Names in the national languages below.

For more detailed information on the political positions of some of the parties listed below, see here:[3] For Swiss political party strength on the municipal level, see here:[4]

Party Members in Political ideology
Abbr. Name W Leader FC CS NC C exec. C leg. Members
SVP/UDC Swiss People's Party [1] Albert Rösti 2 5 65 23 590 90,000 (2015)[5] Right-wing, National conservatism, Economic liberalism
SPS/PSS Social Democratic Party [2] Christian Levrat 2 12 43 28 459 30,000 (2015)[5] Centre-left to Left-wing, Social democracy
FDP/PLR FDP.The Liberals [3] Petra Gössi 2 13 33 42[a] 557[b] 120,000 (2015)[5] Centre-right, Classical liberalism
CVP/PDC/PPD Christian Democratic People's Party [4] Gerhard Pfister 1 13 27 40 435 100,000 (2015)[5] Centre to Centre-right, Christian democracy
BDP/PBD Conservative Democratic Party [5] Martin Landolt 0 1 7 4 66 6,500 (2015)[5] Centre to Centre-right, Conservative liberalism
GPS/PES Green Party [6] Regula Rytz 0 1 11 7 176 7,500 (2015)[5] Left-wing, Green politics
GLP/PVL Green Liberal Party [7] Martin Bäumle 0 0 7 85 3,800 (2015)[5] Centrism, Green liberalism
EVP/PEV Evangelical People's Party [8] Marianne Streiff 0 0 2 39 4,600 (2015)[5] Centre to Centre-left, Christian democracy
Lega Ticino League [9] Attilio Bignasca 0 0 2 2 22 1,500 (2015)[5] Right-wing, Regionalism (TI)
MCG Geneva Citizens' Movement [10] Ana Roch 0 0 1 1 20 1,500 (2015)[5] Right-wing, Regionalism (GE)
PdA/PST Swiss Party of Labour [11] Norberto Crivelli 0 0 1 13 Far-left, Communism
CSP OW Christian Social Party of Obwalden [12] Christian Schäli
Sepp Stalder
0 0 1 1 7 250 (2015)[5] Centre-left, Christian left
CSP/PCS Christian Social Party [13] Marius Achermann 0 0 0 1 15 1,500 (2011)[6] Centre-left, Christian left
EDU/UDF Federal Democratic Union [14] Hans Moser 0 0 0 19 3,000 (2011)[6] Right-wing, Christian right
AL Alternative Left [15]   0 0 0 10 2,000 (2011)[6] Left-wing, Democratic socialism
Total   7 46* 200 154[c][7] 2609[d][8]  

Minor parties[edit]

The following groups or parties are not represented at either the cantonal or national level (but may hold positions in municipal parliaments).

Abbr. Name W Leader Ideology Founded Popular vote[e]
Sol Solidarity [16]   Far-left, Anti-capitalism 1992 0.05% (2015)
SLB/MSL Social Liberal Movement [17] Samuel Schmid Centre-right, Social conservatism 2011 0.1% (2015)
SD/DS Swiss Democrats [18] Bernhard Hess Right-wing, National conservatism 1961 0.1% (2015)
FPS/PSL Freedom Party [19] Peter Commarmot Right-wing, National liberalism 1984 n/a
HPS/PHS Swiss Humanist Party [20] Daniel Horowitz Humanist Movement 1984 n/a
KVP Catholic People's Party [21] Lukas Brühwiler-Frésey Catholic social teaching 1994 n/a
PNOS Swiss Nationalist Party [22] Dominic Lüthard Far-right, Ethnic nationalism 2000 0.05%
PPS Pirate Party [23] Denis Simonet Freedom of Information, Information privacy 2009 0.48%
TPS/PSpA Tierpartei Schweiz [24] Thomas Märki Animal rights 2010 0.15%
Parteifrei [25] Lukas Harder Voluntary association of independent politicians formed for the 2011 elections; opposing party politics 2011 0.19%
MontagnaViva [26] Germano Mattei Regionalism (Alpine Ticino) 2011 0.08%
Alpenparlament [27] Alternative medicine 2011 0.06%
Konfessionslose [28] Separation of church and state 2011 0.05%
up! The Swiss Independence Party up! [29] Simon Scherrer Libertarianism 2014 n/a
Volksaktion [30] Eric Weber right-wing populism (Basel-Stadt) 2002 0.03%
La gauche combative [31] Communism (Geneva) 2002 0.03%
Les Rauraques [32] Jurassic separatism (Bernese Jura) 2011 0.03%

Historical parties[edit]

Name Ideology Active Continued as
Communist Party of Switzerland Communism 1921–1940 Swiss Party of Labour
Communist Party of Switzerland/Marxist–Leninists Communism 1969–1987 Libertarian Socialist Party
Communist Party Opposition Communism 1930–1935 Social Democratic Party of Switzerland
Democratic Party Direct democracy 1860–1971 Swiss People's Party
Party of Farmers, Traders and Independents (BGB) Conservatism, Agrarianism 1936–1971 Swiss People's Party
Eidgenössische Sammlung Fascism/nationalism 1940–1943
Free Democratic Party of Switzerland (FDP/PRD/PLR) Classical liberalism, Radicalism 1894–2009 FDP.The Liberals
Liberal Party of Switzerland (LPS/PLS) Classical liberalism 1913–2009 FDP.The Liberals
National Front Fascism/nationalism 1930s Eidgenössische Sammlung
National Movement of Switzerland (NBS) Nazism 1940–1941
National Union Fascism/nationalism 1932–1940
Progressive Organizations of Switzerland (POCH) Communism 1969–1993
Republican Movement Right-wing populism, Christian right 1971–1989
Ring of Independents (LdU) Centrism 1936–1999
Volkspartei der Schweiz (VPS) Neo-Nazism 1950s

Names in the national languages[edit]

Abbr. Party German French Italian Romansh
CVP/PDC Christian Democratic People's Party Christlichdemokratische Volkspartei der Schweiz or CVP Parti Démocrate-Chrétien Suisse or PDC Partito Popolare Democratico or PPD Partida Cristian-democratica de la Svizra or PCD
FDP/PRD Free Democratic Party Freisinnig-Demokratische Partei der Schweiz or FDP Parti radical-démocratique suisse or PRD Partito Liberale Radicale or PLR Partida liberaldemocrata de la Svizra or PLD
SPS/PSS Social Democratic Party Sozialdemokratische Partei der Schweiz or SP Parti Socialiste Suisse or PSS Partito Socialista Svizzero or PSS Partida Socialdemocratica de la Svizra or PSS
SVP/UDC Swiss People's Party Schweizerische Volkspartei or SVP Union Démocratique du Centre or UDC Unione Democratica di Centro or UDC Partida Populara Svizra or PPS
CSP/PCS Christian Social Party Christlich-soziale Partei or CSP Parti chrétien-social or PCS Partito Cristiano Sociale or PCS Partida cristiansociala de la Svizra or PCS
BDP/PBD Conservative Democratic Party Bürgerlich-Demokratische Partei Schweiz or BDP Parti bourgeois démocratique Suisse or PBD Partito borghese democratico Svizzera or PBD Partida burgais democratica Svizra or PBD
EVP/PEV Evangelical People's Party Evangelische Volkspartei der Schweiz or EVP Parti Evangelique Suisse or PEV Partito Evangelico or PE Partida Evangelica Svizra or PEV
FPS/PSL Freedom Party Freiheits-Partei der Schweiz or FPS Parti Suisse de la Liberté or PSL Partito svizzero della Libertà or PSL Partida Svizra da la Libertad or PSL
GPS/PES Green Party Grüne Partei der Schweiz or Grüne Parti Écologiste Suisse or Les Verts Partito Ecologista Svizzero or I Verdi Partida Ecologica Svizra or La Verda
LPS/PLS Liberal Party Liberale Partei der Schweiz or LPS Parti libéral suisse or PLS Partito Liberale Svizzero or PLS Partida liberal-conservativa Svizra or PLC
AL Alternative Left Alternative Linke or AL La Gauche or LG La Sinistra or LS
SD/DS Swiss Democrats Schweizer Demokraten or SD Démocrates Suisses or DS Democratici Svizzeri or DS Democrats Svizzers or DS
Lega Ticino League Ligue des Tessinois Lega dei Ticinesi
EDU/UDF Federal Democratic Union Eidgenössisch-Demokratische Union or EDU Union Démocratique Fédérale or UDF Unione Democratica Federale or UDF Uniun democrata federala or UDF
PdA/PST Swiss Party of Labour Partei der Arbeit der Schweiz or PdA Parti suisse du travail – Parti Ouvrier et Populaire or PST-POP Partito Comunista or PC Partida svizra da la lavur or PSdL
GLP/PVL Green Liberal Party Grünliberale Partei der Schweiz or GLP Parti vert'libéral or PVL Partito Verde-Liberale or PVL Partida Verda-Liberala or PVL
MCG Geneva Citizens' Movement Mouvement citoyens genevois
CSP OW Christian Social Party of Obwalden Christlichsoziale Partei Obwalden
Sol Solidarity Solidarität solidaritéS
SLB/MSL Social Liberal Movement Sozial-Liberale Bewegung Mouvement socio-libéral Movimento social-liberale
SD/DS Swiss Democrats Schweizer Demokraten Démocrates Suisses Democratici Svizzeri Democrats Svizers
FPS/PSL Freedom Party Freiheits-Partei der Schweiz Parti suisse de la liberté Partito svizzero della Libertà Partida Svizra da la Libertad
HPS/PHS Swiss Humanist Party Humanistische Partei der Schweiz Parti Humaniste de la Suisse Partito Umanista della Svizzera
KVP Catholic People's Party Katholische Volkspartei Parti populaire catholique Partito popolare Cattoliche
PNOS Swiss Nationalist Party Partei National Orientierter Schweizer Parti nationaliste suisse Svizzero Partito Nazionalista
PPS Pirate Party Piratenpartei Schweiz Parti Pirate Suisse Partito Pirata Svizzera Partida da Pirats Svizra
TPS/PSpA Tierpartei Schweiz Tierpartei Schweiz or TPS Parti suisse pour les animaux or PSpA Partito svizzero per gli animali or PSpA Partida svizra d'animals or PSA
up! The Swiss Independence Party up! Unabhängigkeitspartei up! up! Switzerland

Sources: The Swiss Federal Chancellery

Relative importance[edit]

At the federal level[edit]

Overall[edit]

Number of elected representatives by party at the federal, cantonal and communal levels in 2014 (governmental parties)[9]
Party Number of elected representatives at the federal, cantonal and communal levels
FDP.The Liberals
2,011
Social Democratic Party
1,863
Swiss People's Party
1,511
Christian Democratic Party
1,205
Conservative Democratic Party
173

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Including seats held by the Liberal Party of Switzerland which merged into FDP in 2009, but still retains separate party structure in some cantons
  2. ^ Including the Liberal Party
  3. ^ Cantonal executives As of August 2016, including one independent member of the Council of States (Thomas Minder).
  4. ^ Cantonal legislatures As of November 2016, including independents and small minor parties.
  5. ^ Swiss federal election, 2011, where applicable

References[edit]

  1. ^ Pierre Cormon, Swiss Politics for Complete Beginners, Editions Slatkine, 2014, ISBN 978-2-8321-0607-5, p. 31–32 Archived November 4, 2014, at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ "Nationalratswahlen: Übersicht Schweiz". Federal Statistical Office. Retrieved 2015-10-19.
  3. ^ "Swiss Political Parties Reveal Their Colours". Swissinfo. September 11, 2015. Retrieved October 29, 2015.
  4. ^ "Gemeindewahlen" (in German). Federal Statistical Office. Retrieved December 11, 2016.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "The Swiss Confederation — A Brief Guide" (PDF). Federal Chancellery. 2015. Retrieved December 14, 2016.
  6. ^ a b c Der Bund kurz erklärt (in German). Swiss Confederation. 2011. p. 21. Archived from the original on 2012-01-24.
  7. ^ "Kantonale Regierungswahlen" (in German). Federal Statistical Office. Retrieved December 11, 2016.
  8. ^ "Kantonale Parlamentswahlen" (in German). Federal Statistical Office. Retrieved December 11, 2016.
  9. ^ Kevin Gertsch; Chantal Tauxe (24 December 2014). "L'UDC n'est pas le premier parti de Suisse" [The UDC is not the largest party in Switzerland]. L'Hebdo. pp. 62–63.

Bibliography[edit]

External links[edit]