Elections in Austria are free and fair. The 183 members of Austria’s Nationalrat (the lower house of the Austrian Parliament) are chosen through proportional representation at the district, state and federal levels and serve 5-year terms. The 62 members of the Bundesrat (the upper house) are chosen by the provincial diets for five- to six-year terms. The chancellor is appointed by the president. The president, elected for a maximum of two six-year terms, is theoretically given significant powers by the constitution. But in praxis he serves as a mere ceremonial figurehead. The last general election, in September 2013, resulted in a narrow combined majority of the centre-left Social Democratic Party (52 seats) and the centre-right People’s Party (47 seats), thereby allowing the two
parties to renew their grand coalition government.