by Geir E Jansen
Sun Sep 18th, 2005 at 08:30:30 PM EST
Sunday Germans went to the polls in what seemed to be an election-thriller with no definitive outcome, in general with regard to the question of who should be coalition-partners in the next German government, and in particular to who should take the leading role in the post-election government.
For a long time the black-yellow coalition-alternative of the conservative Christian-Democratic party and the liberal FDP, had a decisive lead in the polls.
But as the election-date came closer, the incumbent chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and his red-green coalition of the Social-Democratic party and the party of the Green, closed the gap day by day, until the polls indicated a difference of only a few percent-points one day in advance of the election.
The results of the German election so far are confirming the trend that the two alternative government-coalitions have got more or less the same percent-points of votes, SPD and the Greens 42,3 %, and CDU/CSU and FDP 45 %, no one with a clear parliamentary majority (at 21.30 PM GMT), German television-channel ZDF reports.
The big surprise seem to be the poor result of the CDU/CSU, having such a clear lead, for so long in the different opinion-polls, 15-20 % at the most.
The winners seem to be the liberal FDP with 10 %, and the newly established Left party with 8,6 %.
The poor election-results for the CDU/CSU, could partly seem to be explained in tactical voting by conservative voters, voting on the liberal FDP, to try to prevent a possible "grand coalition" between the CDU/CSU and the SPD.
On the other side the drop in percent-points for the SPD, could partly be explained by the establishment of the Left party, who to a great extend have taken votes away from the SPD.
The overall picture seem to be a snap-shot of a political status-quo between the two alternative government-coalitions since the last election in 2002, only with a leak of votes to parties on the same side in a left-right perspective, both CDU/CSU and SPD got 38,5 % in 2002.
On the condition that this will be the final result, after every vote in every constituency have been counted, the message from the German voters seems to be one favouring political status-quo.
Forming a governing majority coalition of parties that feels comfortable being political partners though, seems to be the great challenge if this is to become the final election-result.
A variety of different government-coalitions have been on the agenda as the election-results indicates no desicive outcome, with a "grand coalition" between CDU/CSU and SPD, and a "traffic-light"-coalition between the SPD, Greens, and FDP as the most likely coalition-alternatives.
The statements from the different party-leaders though, have given no indication or clue to what kind of coalition-alternatives that will prevail, since FDP have ruled out a "traffic-light"-coalition, and the SPD have ruled out a grand coalition between SDP and CDU/CSU.
The most likely alternative with regard to the question of government, could show to be that the red-green coalition-government of Gerhard Schroeder continues as a minority-government, leaving it up to the Left party to decide between a left-of centre minority-government, or a right-of centre minority-government.
At the moment, 23.15 PM GMT, nothing seems certain, other than an election-result with no clear outcome.
This article is also available at Bitsofnews.com.