The article shows that two constitutional principles govern the election of justices and the composition of the 16 German state constitutional courts: democracy and the separation of powers. The recruitment of candidates, the vote on nominees in state parliaments, and the composition of benches of the courts in question support this assumption. There is no evidence indicating that a partisan takeover of German state constitutional courts has taken place. In addition, the majorities required for an appointment of justices of state constitutional courts seem less crucial than is often assumed.
Werner Reutter has worked as a Research Fellow at the Berlin Social Science Center and the Free University, and as an Assistant Professor at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. He has been a Visiting Professor in Berlin, Bonn, and Jena, and a Visiting Associate Professor at the University of Minnesota. He is the author of Möglichkeiten und Grenzen internationaler Gewerkschaftspolitik (1998), the editor of Germany on the Road to “Normalcy”: Policies and Politics of the Red-Green Federal Government (2004), Verbände und Interessengruppen in den Ländern der Europäischen Union (2012, 2nd ed.), Landesverfassungsgerichte: Entwicklung—Aufbau—Funktionen (2017), and co-editor, with Siegfried Mielke, of Landesparlamentarismus: Geschichte—Struktur—Funktionen (2012, 2nd ed.).