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German regional elections open thread

by Jerome a Paris Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 12:13:17 PM EST

In addition to Japan, where the outgoing LDP is taking a historical beating (see tuasfait's diary for full coverage below), we have some regional elections in Germany today, which are seen as a key test one month away from the general election.

Deutsche Well has a good intro here:

All three states are currently governed by Chancellor Merkel's center-right Christian Democratic Union. If the CDU manages to hold onto power, Merkel's already leading position in the federal election will be strengthened. Her opponents in the center-left Social Democratic Party (SPD), who are lagging in the polls, hope Sunday's results will reinvigorate the demoralized party.

Sunday's vote could also rewrite Germany's political map, with a left-wing coalition between the SPD and the Left Party possible in Saarland, the first such grouping in western Germany. The liberal Free Democrats (FDP), who want a coalition with the CDU on the national level, are also hoping to pick up votes and enter state governments Sunday.

Use this thread to post your news and comments.


Display:
SZ, early results

18:03 Uhr Saarland: Die erste Prognose sagt Ministerpräsident Peter Müller eine schwere Schlappe voraus. Die CDU büßt nach den Zahlen des ZDF 12 Prozentpunkte ein und liegt bei 35 Prozent. Die SPD erreicht 26 Prozent, die FDP 10 Prozent, die Grünen 6 - und die Linke mit ihrem Spitzenkandidat Oskar Lafontaine bekommt 19,5 Prozent.

Saarland: CDU loses 12%, down to 35%, SPD 26%, FDP up to 10, Greens 6 and Left 19.5%.

18:08 Uhr Thüringen: Der neue Landtag in Erfurt wird bunter: Fünf Parteien werden wohl im Parlament vertreten sein. Auf der Grundlage der ersten ZDF-Prognose kommt die CDU auf 30 Sitze, die FDP kann 8 Abgeordnete entsenden. Linke, SPD und Grüne kommen gemeinsam auf 50 Sitze - dies wäre eine komfortable Mehrheit.

Thuringen: comfortable majority for Left, SPD and Greens.

18:16 Uhr Sachsen: Die sächsische CDU verliert laut Prognose nur minimal und kommt auf 41,0 Prozent der Stimmen (2004: 41,1). Die SPD kann ihr katastrophales Ergebnis von vor fünf Jahren demnach nicht nennenswert verbessern und kommt auf 10 Prozent (2004: 9,8). Die Linke verliert 2,6 Prozentpunkte und erreicht 21 (2004: 23,6), die Grünen verbessern sich auf 6 Prozent (2004: 5,1). Großer Gewinner ist die FDP. Die Liberalen gewinnen deutlich dazu und kommen auf 10,5 Prozent (2004: 5,9). Sie könnten nun die SPD als Juniorpartner der CDU ersetzen. Die rechtsextreme NPD erhält vier Prozent weniger als vor fünf Jahren. Mit 5,1 Prozent ist ihr Einzug in den Landtag fraglich

Saxony: Not much change. Tiny loss for the CDU (41%), tiny gain for SPD (10%), Left loses slightly (21%), Greens gain slightly (6%). Most significant changes: Big gain for the FDP (up to 10.5%) and the NPD might be out.

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 12:31:11 PM EST
For Thuringia, this is a bigger beating that expected for the CDU, see the polls here.

So long, Dieter Althaus.

by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 12:35:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Its interesting that the 'swing' vs. the polls seems entirely from the CDU to the... Left Party. Even more interestingly you'll find the same pattern for Saarland -- could there be a systematic error in the corrections done by pollsters?

In Saxony, the significant difference is the SPD getting less.

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

by DoDo on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 01:51:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
There might be exit polls that show the real 'swing' at some point, are you referring to that? I don't know how many CDU voters would genuinely move to the Left Party, though of course some are possible. The Left party doesn't neglect its socially eehm... less liberal wing, least of all Lafontaine.
by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 02:09:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I put it in scare quotes -- it's only from comparing numbers in the last few pre-election poll and in present projections, and seeing all other parties unchanged. We'll see in exit polls where Left Party voters came from.

The Left party doesn't neglect its socially eehm... less liberal wing, least of all Lafontaine.

Hm-mmm. Note that most voters the CDU lost are likely to have been... SPD voters a decade ago.

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

by DoDo on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 02:22:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
How is this going to be spun as a victory of the right? Should we expect arguments about how evil it would be for the SPD to ally with the Links?

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 12:43:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Big increase for the FDP everywhere?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 12:56:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]
d'oh!

of course, missed that. The Zeit is already there:

Schwere CDU-Verluste an der Saar und in Thüringen, doch nur leichter Rückenwind für die SPD-Aufholjagd vor der Bundestagswahl: Die Landtagswahlen in Thüringen, Sachsen und im Saarland haben laut ersten Hochrechnungen vor allem die FDP gestärkt. In Thüringen und im Saarland könnte es sowohl rot-rot-grüne als auch "Jamaika"-Bündnisse aus CDU, FDP und Grünen oder Große Koalitionen geben. In Sachsen läuft alles auf Schwarz-Gelb zu.
by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 01:12:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Hmmm...

In early November I am going to be at a small person event where the editor of the Zeit is going to be giving a lecture on 1989 and Germany.  I was already thinking that a question about the rise of the Left party was in order given that they've broken through the Fulda Gap, so to speak.  Doubly so now.

And I'll give my consent to any government that does not deny a man a living wage-Billy Bragg

by ManfromMiddletown (manfrommiddletown at lycos dot com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 06:01:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It's hard to see this being spun as a victory for the right, but there are 2 things the media is going to focus on.

  1. in Saarland, there might be the first coalition with the left in the old western states. This will inevitably be hyped as a sign of things to come. I don't think the public will react in the same way as in Hessen, nor that the Federal SPD will be as skittish about it. Saarland is a small, peripheral state, not the West German heartland, so to say.
  2. in Thuringia, the Left party is the largest in a potential Left/SPD/Greens coalition and might field its first Minister President, which the SPD doesn't want. Whether this becomes a story or not depends on how the SPD and Left Party manage it. Policy wise the Left might as well take up the majority of the cabinet and let the SPD have their Minister President, but that would be politically harmful with regard to future elections. There's a small danger the SPD will enter into a grand coalition, though they don't have a comfortable majority there.
by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 01:05:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Based on the results displayed at ARD right now, Left Party-SPD might just be possible in Thuringia. Meanwhile, the NPD is worryingly close to 5%... (4.7%). (The NPD also made it back in Saxony, though falling back by a third vs. two years ago.)

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 01:33:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ah, I missed Brandenburg in my earlier comment on the Bundesrat.

It looks like Brandenburg will easily retain the red/red government, and there is definitely no chance in hell of a CDU/FDP coalition there, so it does not really matter. The neonazis might get kicked out in Brandenburg, which would be good.

by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 01:57:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Check the "Rechte" resp. NPD in the Thuringia and Saxony polls. I think that there is an obvious hiding voters margin there. 'Fortunately', it seems DVU and NPD will divide far-right votes in Brandenburg, however.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 02:08:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The CDU/CSU was getting some of it back when some SocDems blasted Union-FDP coalitions as a sign of what to come. But by far not loud enough for my taste :-)

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 01:53:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Policy wise the Left might as well take up the majority of the cabinet and let the SPD have their Minister President, but that would be politically harmful with regard to future elections.

I see the SPD is already playing balance of power.

Pokern um eine von zwei möglichen Koalitionen in Erfurt | tagesschau.de

Der thüringische SPD-Spitzenkandidat Christoph Matschie erklärte vor jubelnden Anhängern in Erfurt: "Das System Althaus ist abgewählt." Der Wahlkampf habe sich gelohnt. Ohne und gegen die SPD könne in den kommenden Jahren in Thüringen nicht regiert werden. Man werde diese Gestaltungsmöglichkeit nutzen.

...while the Left Party began to shoot preemptive shots against the SPD PM option (also preemptively) advocated by the media over the last week:

Pokern um eine von zwei möglichen Koalitionen in Erfurt | tagesschau.de

Der Fraktionschef der Linken im Bundestag, Gregor Gysi, rief die SPD in Thüringen auf, die "Spielregeln" einzuhalten und Ramelow zum Ministerpräsidenten mitzuwählen. Die stärkere Partei stelle den Regierungschef, sagte Gysi in der ARD.

Die SPD sei in Thüringen deutlich schwächer als die Linke. Es wäre den Wählern nicht zu vermitteln, wenn nun ein anderer Politiker Ministerpräsident werden würde. Der SPD-Landesvorsitzende Matschie stecke nun in der "Ypsilanti-Falle", sagte Gysi unter Anspielung auf die frühere hessische SPD-Vorsitzende Andrea Ypsilanti.



*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 02:01:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The situation is better for the Left in Thuringia for being able to govern only with the SPD, as they can trade a bit more (on the lines of "we'll let the greens in and split the posts if you give us the Minister President")
by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 02:31:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
We'll have to see what things look like in the morning, but if the Frankfurter Rundschau has it right, all these speculations are moot. They're predicting a 3-party parliament with CDU holding 45 of 88 seats.

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 02:45:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]
They're showing the graphic from the last election on their main page (changes if you click on it). Currently the Left Party+SPD have a projected 45.
by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 02:55:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ah yes. Thank you.

The FAZ is telling us this:



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 03:13:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Greens are now in two East German parliaments (not counting Berlin) -- times are changing. Brandenburg could be the third in a month.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 01:41:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Die Linke went from 2.5% (in their 2005 PDS 'incarnation') to 19.5% in the Saarland?

That's ... impressive.  Also impressive is the fact they seem to have drawn those numbers from other than the SDP, down 4.2%.


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 03:22:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]

It all reduces to a single variable, otherwise they would have gotten just enough to get in.

by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 05:34:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I may have the chronology wrong, but wasn't he already there in 2005? Had he joined them so recently that most people hadn't realized it yet?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Mon Aug 31st, 2009 at 03:19:40 AM EST
[ Parent ]
He used to be Minister President of Saarland for 13 years when he was in the SPD, and he ran again.
by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Mon Aug 31st, 2009 at 03:39:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]
ATinNM confused something. In the 2005 federal elections, the Left Party already got 18.5% of list votes in Saarland. In the 2004 regional elections, PDS got 2.3%.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Mon Aug 31st, 2009 at 03:39:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
These elections are not only a marker for the Federal elections in terms of the race, they will determine the composition of the Bundesrat, something like the upper house of the German parliament, which gets to vote on around half the laws that any government can make.

Currently, a potential CDU/CSU-FDP coalition has 36 out of 69 votes in the Bundesrat (coalitions at the state level vote as blocs in the Bundesrat and votes need to pass with aboslute majority, so one coalition partner can block a piece of legislation). As per the early returns, these elections could shift 7 votes away from the CDU (Saarland and Thuringia, where it had an absolute majority), but 4 from the CDU-SPD coalition in Saxony to a CDU-FDP coalition.

33 out of 69 is a minority, meaning that the left can form a block on a lot of legislation if it manages to hold together. However, the game isn't over yet. The Bundestagwahl coincides with elections in the state Schleswig-Holstein, which also has 4 votes. Those elections might end up deciding the future coalition, if the CDU and FDP manage to eke out a slim majority in the Bundestag.

by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 12:52:21 PM EST
Thinking quick. Would for example a renouncement of the Atomausstieg need to pass the Bundesrat? What about changing the EEG? (IIRC both.)

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 01:57:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Even the FDP has given up its opposition, officially (some friend at a lobbying arm of a major solar company here in Berlin told me). Of course, they might still gut it by cutting back the rates aggressively. But that's going to be a fight.

Will have to look at the Atomausstieg

by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 02:01:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
IIRC the two times the EEG feed-in rates were changed, that had to pass the Bundesrat, too.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 02:02:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ah, well remembered. In 2004, the debate in the Bundesrat even went to the Vermittlungsausschuss. In 2008, as part of Klimapaket I.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 02:18:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Atomausstiegsgesetz was also passed by the Bundesrat. At the time, Schröder threatened that he would pass by the Bundesrat if needed. It is not clear to me that he would have been able to, constitutionally. As it is an existing law, it should be more difficult now.
by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 02:25:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Merkel's CDU party takes heavy hits in state elections | Germany | Deutsche Welle | 30.08.2009
Just a month before national elections, Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats suffered big losses in two out of three state elections, while the left-wing Left Party and the liberal Free Democrats gained ground. 

The Christian Democratic Union (CDU) seems likely to lose control of governments in Saarland and Thuringia after state elections Sunday, according to early projections from the ARD and ZDF public television networks.

 

The losses at the state level could be a blow for Chancellor Angela Merkel, who's campaigning for a second term in federal elections to be held September 27.

 

Merkel's party looks likely to only hold onto to the former East German state of Saxony, led by the state's popular CDU premier, Stanislav Tillich. Next door in Thuringia, incumbent CDU premier Dieter Althaus seems likely to lose office after his party drew only about 31 percent of the vote compared to 43 percent five years ago.

by Fran on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 12:52:55 PM EST
Merkel's party suffers losses in state votes - swissinfo

BERLIN (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel's party suffered losses in regional elections on Sunday, exit polls showed, a disappointment for her conservatives one month before she seeks re-election in a federal vote.

In the state of Saarland, on the French border, and in Thuringia, in the ex-communist east, Christian Democrat (CDU) leaders who have ruled for a decade saw their support slump by over 10 points compared to 2004 to 34.5 percent and 32.5 percent, respectively.

They could both be unseated by leftist coalitions. In a third regional vote in the eastern state of Saxony, Merkel's party looked poised to retain power, most likely in a coalition with the business-friendly Free Democrats (FDP).

The three state elections were seen as key tests of sentiment in the run-up to the September 27 federal vote.

by Fran on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 12:57:50 PM EST
Are also happening, in North Rhine-Westphalia, the largest German state. The CDU has lost a bit, the FDP gained a smaller bit, and the other parties are more or less constant. But the SPD did win Cologne, the fourth city of Germany, from the CDU.
by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 01:29:16 PM EST
...and, in the mayor election, that with a margin! (55% to 34.5%) Was there some local reason? (dvx?) Left Party at 4.5%.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 01:35:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Cologne lost its memory

(cheap, but too good to pass up)

by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 01:51:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Fail City went to the polls!

(Was away all weekend and I'm still getting up to speed here. Give me a few minutes and I'll put up something resembling and intelligent comment.)

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 02:39:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Hey - the cheapest shots are the most fun!

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 03:42:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
They had a major desaster when their city archive building collapsed while a underground line was built.

See the wikipedia text on it for details.

Now what ?

by pi (etrib@opsec.eu) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 02:59:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I remember that case; but didn't expect that the mayor will the blame for that.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 06:23:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Having deaths occur under your watch due to apparent negligence tends to stick.
by nanne (zwaerdenmaecker@gmail.com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 07:06:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
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 ]
CDU in NRW trotz Verlusten vorn - Kölner Stadt-AnzeigerCDU ahead in NRW in spite of losses
In Bonn, Dortmund, Bochum und Köln werden SPD-Kandidaten die Oberbürgermeisterwahlen gewinnen, landesweit liegt die CDU in Nordrhein-Westfalen aber bei der Kommunalwahl vorn. Die Wahlbeteiligung liegt noch niedriger als 2004.SPD candidates are on track to win the mayoral elections in Bonn, Dortmund, Bochum and Cologne, but the CDU leads in municipal elections state-wide. Voter participation is even lower than in 2004.
DÜSSELDORF - Die CDU ist trotz Verlusten laut einer WDR-Hochrechnung erneut als stärkste Kraft aus den Kommunalwahlen am Sonntag in Nordrhein-Westfalen hervorgegangen. Sie kam landesweit auf 40,4 Prozent. Das sind 3,0 Prozentpunkte weniger als 2004. Die SPD erreichte 31,3 Prozent und schnitt damit ähnlich ab wie vor fünf Jahren. Die Grünen liegen bei 10,6 Prozent und wiederholten damit in etwa das Ergebnis von 2004. Die FDP kommt auf 8,2 Prozent. Die Linkspartei erreicht 4,5 Prozent. Die Wahlbeteiligung erreichte mit nur 51 Prozent einen neuen Tiefstand in der Landesgeschichte.DÜSSELDORF - According to a projection of [state public broadcaster] WDR, the CDU has once more emerged from Sunday's municipal elections in North Rhine-Westphalia as the strongest party in spite of losses. State-wide, its share of the vote was 40.4 percent. The SPD achieved 31.3 percent, for a result comparable to five years ago. The greens are at 10.6 percent, approximately repeating their result from 2004. The Party of the Left came in at 4.5 percent. Voter participation came to just 51 percent, a new low in the history ofr the state.


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 03:31:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
With the final results in; overall, the one thing to note is that Germany's new five-party system now seems rock-solid.

Now come the coalition pokers. With some nice untried ones possible in Saaarland: Jamaica? [that's CDU + Greens + FDP] Red-Red-Green? Either of those or the lousy old Grand Coalition.

Poor Ypsilanti, if only her time would have come after this...

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

by DoDo on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 06:30:00 PM EST
The party leader of the Greens in the Saarland is pretty conservative, but I'm sure they won't risk alienating their voters by giving Müller another 5 years.

Grand Coalition won't happen with Maas and the Saar-SPD will not revolt against him if he goes for Red-Red-Green to finally become minister-president. You have to remember that most people who campaigned for Oskar are the same one's who did it 20 years ago (he won with 55% in 1990, probably the best result the SPD ever had anywhere).

This round of poker shouldn't last too long.

"If you know your enemies and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles." Sun Tzu

by Turambar (sersguenda at hotmail com) on Sun Aug 30th, 2009 at 07:09:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
There could still be an issue of personal animosity from five years ago.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Mon Aug 31st, 2009 at 01:38:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Turambar:
This round of poker shouldn't last too long.

No, except I can imagine the SPD wanting to drag things out for, oh, five weeks. ;)

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 Mon Aug 31st, 2009 at 03:02:13 AM EST
[ Parent ]


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