The Swiss Times - Swiss News in English

Two seats are still vacant in the St. Gallen government

Two seats in the seven-member St. Gallen government remained vacant in the first round of voting. The second round of voting on April 14 will see a duel between the SP and SVP.

On March 3, all five previous members of the St. Gallen government were easily re-elected. None of the new candidates achieved an absolute majority. It is therefore still unclear whether the current composition will be retained. Until now, two members each from the FDP, Center Party and SP as well as a representative of the SVP formed the government.

On April 14, it will now be decided whether the SVP will make good on its announcement and, as the party with by far the most voters in the conservative rural canton, take both of the remaining vacant seats. The SVP was previously represented in the government by Education Director Stefan Kölliker, who did not run again. The SP, on the other hand, wants to defend its second seat following the resignation of Fredy Fässler.

Two non-partisans get involved

Christof Hartmann is standing for the SVP in the second round of voting. The bank consultant is a cantonal councillor and has been Chairman of the Finance Commission for several years. Dana Zemp, the second candidate, was a cantonal doctor in St. Gallen before becoming director of the Rheinburg Clinic in Walzenhausen after a stopover. On March 3, both candidates were almost tied at the top of the list of non-elected candidates with around 58,000 votes.

Lawyer Bettina Surber from the SP followed in third place with around 48,000 votes. Following the withdrawal of the Green and GLP candidates, the SP parliamentary group leader is relying on the left-green votes in the cities and larger conurbations.

One surprise in the first round of voting was the high number of votes for Sarah Bösch, who is not a member of a political party. The owner and manager of a hotel crèche in St. Gallen achieved just under 40,000 votes. She could take votes away from the SVP candidates in particular.

The fifth candidate is Alfred Tobler, who is also independent but is not actively campaigning.

Marc Mächler and Beat Tinner from the FDP, Bruno Damann and Susanne Hartmann from the Center Party and Laura Bucher from the SP have already been elected to the St. Gallen government.


Most Read

Sunday, April 7 – Round Up

7 April 2024
Switzerland may fund French nuclear projects as it grapples with internal issues in the news this Sunday morning.

Swiss Employers Association: Increase Retirement Ages

8 April 2024
Following the rejection of a pension initiative, the Swiss Employers' Association (SAV) recommends a gradual raise in retirement age to 66.

Mustafa Atici Wins: First Migrant in the Executive

8 April 2024
Mustafa Atici, a Kurdish-born entrepreneur, wins the Basel's government election, the first migrant in the executive.

Swiss Oculis Secures $59M in Funding: Iceland Listing Next

11 April 2024
Oculis finalises a $59 million investment round and sets sights on Nasdaq Iceland listing, bolstering its innovative eye care solutions.

Stay in Touch!


Barry Callebaut Beats Market Trends with Sales Increase
10 April 2024
Zug Leads Swiss Purchasing Power: GfK Study Insights
9 April 2024