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the result is that we don't have a result. Awful.
by mimi on Sun Sep 18th, 2005 at 09:51:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
At least you didn't have corrupt local election officials trying to suppress one of your party's votes. Nor will you now have a month in which the CDU and/or SPD try desperately to affect the results of the election through a selective use of recounts, court cases, and phony popular demonstrations.

So the view from America is that this result, while not ideal, looks pretty good. At least it appears to reflect the actual will of the voters.

by GreenSooner (greensooner@NOSPAMintergate.com) on Sun Sep 18th, 2005 at 10:16:26 PM EST
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It could be worse, yes, but it doesn't reflect the will of the voters. The vast majority of those voters were casting their ballots for either a continuation of the current govt. or a black-yellow one. That's not going to happen.
by MarekNYC on Sun Sep 18th, 2005 at 11:29:55 PM EST
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right, but the kind of problems you had in Florida, is just one set of problems you can have. We have just a completely different kind of problem at hand right now. As to wether the result reflects the will of the voters, yes most probably, but then in this case not. Or let's say it reflects that the voters themselves don't know exactly what they want.

But I think no voter intended to create a situation which is not clear, they hoped for a either a black-yellow take-over or for continuation of red-green, I guess. The fact that the vote ended up to create a situation that seems to indicate that neither of the two solutions is wanted without replacing them with a new clear-cut coalition is a problem.

You simply don't know, if the voters would rather have a black-yellow-green coaltion under Merkel or a grand coalition under Merkel or Schroeder or a red-green-yellow coalition under Schroeder.

So, what is the will of the voter? It's not clear. That's the problem.

by mimi on Mon Sep 19th, 2005 at 08:26:19 AM EST
[ Parent ]
But officials trying to thwart the will of the voters seems to me orders of magnitude different than a murky picture that no individual voter wanted.

And surely the 12 or 13% who voted for parties other than CDU/CSU, SPD, FDP or Greens did not want either red-green or black-yellow.

The will of the people is truly unclear, and this is fairly represented in the results. Now it's up to the people's elected representatives to figure out the mess. That's representative democracy.

Two other thoughts about this situation as it now stands:

  1. Such a divided parliament is very dangerous in a system in which sizable numbers of seats belong to parties opposed to the very system of government.  This is, of course, what happened to Germany in the early 1930s, and to Italy in the 1920s.  But, despite all the blather about die Linke not being a democratic party, that's simply not the case today. The NPD got nowhere near the 5% needed to take their seats.

  2. My attitude toward the German result is very American, in that our system of government, with its checks and balances, is more or less designed not to run smoothly and efficiently for the majority of the moment.  Over the years I've come to value that aspect of the U.S. system. Of course, that's not the case now, with the Republicans in control of the White House, both Houses of Congress, and the federal courts, a situation which makes me long for divided government. There are worse things than a period of governmental stasis.
by GreenSooner (greensooner@NOSPAMintergate.com) on Mon Sep 19th, 2005 at 08:58:57 AM EST
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