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Here in NRW, the mayors are elected directly, and not by the majority parties in the city council.

Here in Fail City, the destruction through negligence of the most important archive north of the Alps forced the current Mayor Minimum Competence (CDU) to drop out of the race. The CDU could find a local politician, nor even a regional one, who had the courage to stand for mayor as the CDU candidate. So they brought in someone named Peter Kurth from the Berlin CDU (nanne can probably tell us more about the many bright lights of whom the Berlin CDU can boast.) Kurth's pluses (not obviously stupid or corrupt) were not enough to offset his lack of name recognition. Plus, the FDP ran a candidate of its own.

By contrast, SPD and Greens very early on agreed on a joint candidate, Jürgen Roters. This was clever as Roters had earned a lot of recognition in his earlier jobs as head of the police and, subsequently, head of regional administration ("Regierungspräsident"), an appointed office. (Judging by the 2 minutes I got to speak with the man at an SPD event last March, he seems to be intelligent and well-informed, and also someone who listens to what people tell him - even those much farther down in the food chain (who in this case suggested that he give me some face time, as (full disclosure) I was involved in a neighborhood initiative at the time)).

Anyway, that's the story of the mayoral race. The city council breaks down as follows (provisionally):

SPD: 28.04%
CDU: 28.02%
Green: 21.55%
FDP: 9.38%
Pro Köln (wingnuts): 5.36%
Left: 4.86%

The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman

by dvx (dvx.clt št gmail dotcom) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 03:06:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I suppose I should add that our neighborhood initiative was ultimately able to carry its point (preventing construction on a green space) in June with the support of SPD and CDU, and against opposition from the Greens. When we started this 2 years ago, we anticipated that the Greens would be our natural allies in preserving urban green space. Instead, they were the party that most adamantly insisted on construction (which may or may not have something to do with the fact that the head of the local Greens is on the board of the municipal corporation seeking to "develop" the green space).

The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt št gmail dotcom) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 03:52:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
(nanne can probably tell us more about the many bright lights of whom the Berlin CDU can boast.)

cough, cough, yes, well, see here.

by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 06:01:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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