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According to a news report in Der Spiegel this morning, Angela Merkel may require a two-thirds majority to approve any agreement on the European Stability Mechanism, the long-term replacement of the EFSF. This came from an opinion expressed by the Bundestag legal department. This is the same hurdle as required for a full blown change in the German constitution, but in this case the high voting threshold is required because the decision has implications for the Bundestag's administrative sovereignty (we presume it might require the Bundestag to sign checks against its will). This means that Merkel will need the support of the SPD and/or the Greens to push her package through, and this in turn means that her degrees of freedom during the negotiations on the competitiveness pact will be even more constrained.
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