1 Hitler called for an election for the Reichstag in March 1933, excluding Communists in the vote.
1.1 February 27th - The Reichstag building was set on fire.
1.1.1 Hitler first reaction was to blame the Communists for this act.
22.214.171.124 Van der Lubbe was spotted at the scene, supporting Hitler's
claim, and was arrested without evidence. He was tortured by
the Gestapo until he confessed then was charged as guilty and
126.96.36.199.1 Communists said it was a plot made by Nazi's:
So Nazi's would set the building on fire and
blame the Communists.
188.8.131.52.1.1 One story included van der Lubbe planning
the fire and when the SA found out, they
184.108.40.206.1.2 Suspicions were gathered over this -
people thought Hitler began this and made
political use of the fire.
220.127.116.11 The following day, Hitler persuaded Hindenburg to pass an emergency
decree using Article 48 - "Protection of the people and state
18.104.22.168.1 This gave Hitler the power to arrest anyone of suspicion that
opposed the government (political opposition; take away liberty
and freedom of speech; take control of the press.
22.214.171.124.2 With this power, Hitler ordered 40,000 Communists to be arrested. The
SA intimidated many others, forcing them into opposition so Hitler
would be able to arrest them too by the March election.
126.96.36.199.2.1 Following the election, the Nazi's won 44%; the largest party, but still not majority
(which is what they aimed for). Hitler was disappointed and therefore utilised his
decree to eliminate the Communists from elections and denied them their seats.
188.8.131.52.2.1.1 To ensure Hitler would get majority, be also took action to The
Centre and Nationalist Parties, but since these parties helped the
Nazis, instead of making them illegal, he persuaded them to
dissolve themselves and support Nazi's. As an incentive for The
Centre, Hitler ensured the Catholic Church was under his protection.
184.108.40.206.2.1.2 Many big trade unions were linked to the Social Democrats
who had influence over workers. To avoid being overpowered
by this, Hitler also banned Social Democrats by occupying
their offices and imprisoning their leaders after trotting
220.127.116.11.2.1.3 With 444 votes in favour of the Nazi's (and 94 Socialists voting against), the
Reichstag essentially voted themselves out of power of government by the
favour of Nazi's and the Enabling Act was then passed to Hitler, meaning he
could now as he pleased without consulting the Reichstag.
18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124 With Hitler's newfound power, Germany now ceased to be a democracy.
126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.1 The Reichstag Fire made a difference for Hitler in his attempt to win the March 1933 election and consolidate his power: it
gave him an opportunity to imprison many Communist leaders, which stopped them campaigning during the election and
allowed the Nazis spread the propaganda to say that the country was in danger from the Communists during its election
campaign. - Both these actions helped the Nazis to win more seats in the election.