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The SPD doesn't need Die Linke, but is the CDU any more (or less) likely to give the SPD the Ministerpräsident position than die Linke is, just to get into government? And, is the CDU any more likely to agree to give the SPD a blank cheque to appoint whoever they damn well please to the post? Both the CDU and Die Linke have more seats than the SPD so, while the SPD gets to be the kingmaker, they have no right to expect to be able to steamroll either of the two potential coalition partners.

However, if the SPD had come second ahead of Die Linke they could have bargained like they did. Fist try to strongarm Die Linke and if that fails, go for junior partner of a Grand Coalition.

So I'm going to put forward the hypothesis that the SPD had their post-election bargaining strategy already decided beforehand, on the assumption that they would come second, and played the different hand they were dealt in the same way. Gamesmanship FAIL.

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 02:51:42 PM EST
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