1965 Belgian general election

General elections were held in Belgium on 23 May 1965.[1] The result was a victory for the Christian Social Party, which won 77 of the 212 seats in the Chamber of Representatives and 44 of the 106 seats in the Senate.[2] Voter turnout was 91.6%.[3] Elections for the nine provincial councils were also held.

1965 Belgian general election

← 1961 23 May 1965 1968 →

212 seats in the Chamber of Representatives
  First party Second party Third party
  Pierre Harmel 1965.jpg Leo Collard 1968.jpg Omer Vanaudenhove.jpg
Leader Pierre Harmel Léo Collard Omer Vanaudenhove
Party Christian Social Socialist Freedom and Progress
Last election 96 seats, 41.46% 84 seats, 36.72% New
Seats won 77 64 48
Seat change Decrease 19 Decrease 20 New
Popular vote 1,785,211 1,403,107 1,119,991
Percentage 34.45% 28.28% 21.61%
Swing Decrease 7.01% Decrease 8.44% New

  Fourth party Fifth party Sixth party
  No image.png No image.png No image.png
Leader Frans Van der Elst Ernest Burnelle Paul Brien
Last election 5 seats, 3.46% 5 seats, 3.08% New
Seats won 12 6 3
Seat change Increase 7 Increase 1 New
Popular vote 346,860 247,311 68,966
Percentage 6.69% 4.77% 1.33%
Swing Increase 3.23% Increase 1.69% New

1965 Belgian legislative election results map.svg
Chamber seat distribution by constituency

Government before election


Government after election


The elections followed the implementation of the 1962 language laws. As a result, the Flemish nationalist People's Union made big gains, as well as the new Democratic Front of the Francophones which was founded as a response to the language laws.

The election also followed the founding of the Party for Freedom and Progress, succeeding the Liberal Party. The new party aimed to reach a broader voter base, in which it succeeded by more than doubling its number of seats.

Despite both government parties losing seats, they retained their sizeable majority and continued governing.


Chamber of RepresentativesEdit

Christian Social Party1,785,21134.4377–19
Belgian Socialist Party1,465,50328.2764–20
Party for Freedom and Progress1,119,99121.6048+28
People's Union346,8606.6912+7
Communist Party of Belgium236,7214.576+1
Democratic Front of the Francophones68,9661.333New
Walloon Front24,2450.471New
Walloon Workers' Party23,5820.451New
de Socialist14,9370.290New
Catholic Party14,0070.270New
Flemish People's Party13,4510.260New
Walloon Communist Party13,3210.260New
Independent Social Party9,4930.180New
Independent Workers Union8,6800.170New
Flemish Democrats7,9830.150New
Walloon Democratic Front5,7090.110New
Francophone Union3,7760.070New
Independent National Party3,0890.060New
Animal Protection2,5430.050New
Belgian Workers' Party2,2370.040New
Independent Rally2,2130.040New
National Party1,8890.0400
Return to Liège1,5520.030New
Union of Independents1,0140.020New
Independent Middle Class9580.020New
Trotsky Communists3850.010New
New Resistance Movement3090.010New
Valid votes5,184,77092.89
Invalid/blank votes396,9417.11
Total votes5,581,711100.00
Registered voters/turnout6,091,53491.63
Source: Belgian Elections


Christian Social Party1,785,19134.8944–3
Belgian Socialist Party1,449,48228.3331–14
Party for Freedom and Progress1,111,89421.7323+12
People's Union338,7706.624+2
Communist Party of Belgium249,7964.883+2
Democratic Front of the Francophones68,3971.341New
Walloon Democratic Front27,2150.530New
Walloon Workers' Party21,5110.420New
Independent Social Party12,1800.240New
Walloon Communist Party11,6000.230New
Francophone Union7,6560.150New
Independent Rally7,4560.150New
Independent Workers Union6,4480.130New
Catholic Party5,2260.100New
Belgian Workers' Party4,2070.080New
Independent National Party4,0660.080New
National Party2,8850.0600
Independent Middle Class8310.020New
Flemish Democrats4750.010New
Valid votes5,117,02591.73
Invalid/blank votes461,5848.27
Total votes5,578,609100.00
Registered voters/turnout6,091,53491.58
Source: Belgian Elections


The distribution of seats among the electoral districts was as follows for the Chamber of Representatives. Seats were reapportioned among the districts due to population growth, which was stronger in Flanders than in Wallonia, and due to several municipalities having been changed to another province following the 1962 language laws. For example, the Comines-Warneton municipalities were transferred from Ypres (West Flanders) to the newly created arrondissement of Mouscron (Hainaut), causing Ypres to lose one seat and Tournai-Ath-Mouscron to gain one seat.

Province Arrondissement(s) Chamber Change
Antwerp Antwerp 20
Mechelen 6
Turnhout 7 +1
Limburg Hasselt 6 +1
Tongeren-Maaseik 7 +1
East Flanders Aalst 6
Oudenaarde 3
Gent-Eeklo 13
Dendermonde 4
Sint-Niklaas 4
West Flanders Bruges 5
Roeselare-Tielt 5
Kortrijk 6
Ypres 2 –1
Veurne-Diksmuide-Ostend 5
Brabant Leuven 8 +1
Brussels 33 +1
Nivelles 5
Hainaut Tournai-Ath-Mouscron 7 +1
Charleroi 11
Thuin 3 –1
Mons 6 –1
Soignies 4
Liège Huy-Waremme 4
Liège 14
Verviers 5 –1
Luxembourg Arlon-Marche-Bastogne 3
Neufchâteau-Virton 2 –1
Namur Namur 5
Dinant-Philippeville 3 –1
Total 212


  1. ^ Dieter Nohlen & Philip Stöver (2010) Elections in Europe: A data handbook, p289 ISBN 978-3-8329-5609-7
  2. ^ Nohlen & Stöver, pp309-311
  3. ^ Nohlen & Stöver, p291