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Joschka Fischer to give up all senior roles

by Jerome a Paris Tue Sep 20th, 2005 at 11:24:06 AM EST

Joschka Fischer to return to back benches

BERLIN - Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer announced Tuesday after the German government's weekend election defeat he would not seek a prominent parliamentary role in his Greens party beyond serving as an ordinary member of the Bundestag.

"I am not seeking any leading position, and the new leadership of the party has my full support," an emotional Fischer said, describing his step as a major break.


In what was seen as a message to Schroeder, who has said he wants to continue in office, despite securing fewer seats than the Christian Democrats, Fischer said: "There is no doubt that we do not have a majority."

He added that he could see no way forward to a new coalition under Schroeder.

Over at A fistful of Euros, Alex Harrowell comments on the same news and interprets it as a sign that there will be a grand coalition.

Could it mean that a coalition with the Left Party is being made possible by the retreat of those leaders most hostile to it (as was Fischer) or is that wishful thinking?

Could you please change the title somehow? Maybe "doesn't pursue leadership"?

Fischer didn't have the official leadership of the Greens.

Neither that of the Party (that's Claudia Roth of the Fundi wing and Reinhard Bütikofer of the Realo wing - the latter from Baden-Württtenberg, one of those who'd make a coalition with the CDU a possibility), nor of the parliamentary fraction (that's Krista Sager and Katrin Göring-Eckhardt, both Realos). Fischer only had government positions. (The Greens have a rule for the separation of party and government positions, something the Realo wing tried to abolish but failed.)

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Tue Sep 20th, 2005 at 11:43:15 AM EST
Does that fit better?

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Tue Sep 20th, 2005 at 03:18:41 PM EST
[ Parent ]
i think this is very clever by him - he is not involved and doesn';t get his feet dirty in any discussions with the CDU for a potential Jamaica, but would be available for a ministerial position under Merkel.
by PeWi on Tue Sep 20th, 2005 at 02:31:06 PM EST
So maybe the headline should say something like:
"Fischer won't pursue leadership (but might take it if offered)?"

Kinda long...

Anyway, he does seem to be removing himself from the whole current process...and his trying to keep his feet clean does make sense too.

Interesting idea about opening things up with the Far Left...moving to the left to draw them in?

"Once in awhile we get shown the light, in the strangest of places, if we look at it right" - Hunter/Garcia

by whataboutbob on Tue Sep 20th, 2005 at 02:56:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
There is a big IF that you missed. Fischer said he will step back IF the greens are not part of the next administration.

There is something fishy about Fischers step now. Either there are some strong movements in the Green party leadership to go with the CDU and he doesn´t want to get his hands dirty negotiating with Merkel (it would be the political death of the Greens to go with a CDU/FDP coalition - TheLeft would have a good laugh and 8% more in the next election), or he knows that Schroeder already has an about fixed deal with some CDU leaders.

Ahhh - finally German politics are getting a bit more interesting.

Moon of Alabama

by Bernhard (MoonofA .at. aol .dot. com) on Tue Sep 20th, 2005 at 03:42:31 PM EST
So you said it, please say some more: what deal does Schroeder almost have with the CDU?

"Once in awhile we get shown the light, in the strangest of places, if we look at it right" - Hunter/Garcia
by whataboutbob on Tue Sep 20th, 2005 at 03:59:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
But could someone explain to me why an SPD-Left-Green coalition isn't possible?
by litho on Tue Sep 20th, 2005 at 09:18:24 PM EST
For the upteenth time: very strong personal animosities and policy differences.

The Left party formed as a pseudo-union of the East German PDS, and the West German WASG group. The latter was formed by people who left the SPD in protest of Schröder's economic reforms, and call for abolishing those.

On the other hand, as Bernhard noted, there is a small chance of compromise, but I suspect only if all the current leaders leave in all three parties.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Wed Sep 21st, 2005 at 05:30:43 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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