I just voted for the German Bundestag today. The regular election day is September 18th, but as I'm about to go to the U.S., I was forced to make my decision in advance.
No wonder, because when the Constitutional Court ("what's that?" see some (interesting!) Background) had to decide over the legality of the intentionally unsuccessful motion of confidence in the Bundeskanzler Gerhard SchrÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¶der on Juli 1st. This led to controversial political discussions all over Germany between the people who support SchrÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¶der's action and those who don't. If you ask me, this has somehow been quite good for the political culture in Germany: People started to develop interest into their political system again.
Finally, the Court allowed the elections to go ahead as planned.
By the way, on September 18th, I will just come to Corvallis after a two-week stay in Portland, Oregon. German polling stations usually close at 6 p.m. - this is, regarding the time shift, 9 a.m. PDT. Just before lunch time, I can hopefully see the first projected election results, then.
I'm curious how many of the people I meet in Oregon even know that Germany votes on this day. :)