Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I'm still at the level of trying to figure out, for instance with that chart above, parliamentary multi-party mathematics.  It would seem to with such large percentages over the SPD why Die Linke can't simply tell them to sit down and shut up as the grown-ups are in charge.  I know there's a reason, but I still do not understand the mathematics of parliamentary majorities/minorities/coalitions and power-sharing arrangements
It all comes down to who is likely to vote along with whom. Better than the vote totals, one should look at the seat count:

CDU 30
Linke 27
SPD 18
B90/G 6
Total: 88

A majority requires 45 seats, which can be achieved by
CDU + Linke: 57
CDU + SPD: 48
Linke + SPD: 45
Of these, CDU + Linke is unlikely, whereas the SPD is able to make deals with both of the other two, making them the more powerful party in the parliament. See Bahnzaf power index for more reading along these lines.

En un viejo país ineficiente, algo así como España entre dos guerras civiles, poseer una casa y poca hacienda y memoria ninguna. -- Gil de Biedma

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Oct 10th, 2009 at 01:31:39 PM EST
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