The Weimar Republic was born in a time great upheaval and conflict. The proportional representation system of voting was intended to reduce political conflicts; resulting in many parties gaining seats in the Reichstag.
As there was no single party in overall control parties had to join together to form a government. However, each party had different aims which made it difficult for the Reichstag to govern. Consequently, there were many changes of government which led to political instability. This was reflected in 376 political assassinations up to 1923.
Despite being from the democratic left, during the early 1920s, Friedrich Ebert relied heavily on the traditionally right-wing army and Freikorps in order to keep control of the country.
Conservative attitudes tended to overemphasise the threat from the left, whilst the threat from the right was severely under estimated.