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German coalition talks collapse

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German coalition talks collapse

Post Neon Knight on Mon 20 Nov - 0:21

https://www.politico.eu/article/german-coalition-talks-collapse/ Quoting:

Talks to form a German coalition government collapsed late Sunday after the liberal Free Democrats (FDP) pulled out of negotiations with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives and the Greens, saying there was no hope the parties could break the stalemate that dogged the discussions for days.

“It’s better not to govern, than to govern badly,” FDP leader Christian Lindner told reporters as he left the talks in Berlin. He said that despite weeks of discussions, leaders of the parties had failed to build “a foundation of trust.”

Green negotiator Jürgen Trittin accused the FDP of effectively sabotaging the talks on Sunday, saying both Merkel’s bloc and his party wanted to continue the discussions. “It was the FDP that was ready to walk out,” he said on German television, adding, “we weren’t really surprised.”

Talks between the three blocs had been bogged down for days over refugee and climate policy, among other issues, with the Greens often isolated in its positions. The decision to end the negotiations, which comes after a month of tortuous discussions, thrusts Europe’s largest country into political uncertainty and makes another election likely.

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Germany's Merkel 'prefers new vote' after coalition talks fail

Post Vendég on Mon 20 Nov - 19:45

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said she would prefer new elections to leading a minority government, after a breakdown in coalition talks plunged the country into political crisis.

She also said she did not see any reason to resign from her post despite the failed negotiations.
On Sunday evening, the FDP liberals pulled out of talks with Mrs Merkel's CDU/CSU bloc and the Greens.
Germany's president called on parties to "reconsider their attitudes".
Frank-Walter Steinmeier urged them to make compromises for Germany's "well-being", amid a situation he said was unprecedented.
Mrs Merkel faces her biggest challenge in 12 years as chancellor.
"The path to the formation of a government is proving harder than any of us had wished for," she told broadcaster ARD.
But she said she was "very sceptical" about a minority government, adding that "new elections would be the better path".
In a separate interview with the ZDF broadcaster, she argued Germany needed stability and a government "that does not need to seek a majority for every decision".

Some in her party still hope for another grand coalition with the Social Democrats (SPD), despite that party repeatedly ruling such an option out.
Earlier on Monday, SPD leader Martin Schulz said his party was "not afraid of new elections".
'Politicians have a responsibility'
When asked about the prospect of another alliance with the SPD, Mrs Merkel told ZDF she would wait to see what came of upcoming talks between President Steinmeier and SPD leaders.

However, she said a demand for her to resign would not make a positive start for a new coalition.
If fresh elections are to happen, they would need to be called by Mr Steinmeier, after a long drawn-out process that would take months.
But he appears to view new polls as a last resort. In a brief address earlier on Monday he told politicians they had a responsibility that could not just be handed back to voters.
"Inside our country, but also outside, in particular in our European neighbourhood, there would be concern and a lack of understanding if politicians in the biggest and economically strongest country [in Europe] did not live up to their responsibilities," he said in a statement.

Mrs Merkel's bloc won September's poll, but many voters deserted the mainstream parties.
Negotiations between the pro-market FDP, the Greens and the conservative CDU/CSU bloc had gone on for four weeks before the FDP's surprise withdrawal late on Sunday.
Mrs Merkel blamed the FDP for the collapse, saying that the parties were on the "home straight" when the liberals pulled out.
But FDP leader Christian Lindner has defended his party, saying it "did not take such a decision lightly".
Despite Mrs Merkel's words about a fresh poll, analysts say the new elections would be likely to benefit the anti-Islam, anti-immigrant AfD most, so other parties would probably try to avoid them.
The far-right AfD won 12.6% of the vote in the September elections, entering parliament for the first time with more than 90 seats.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-42057108

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Re: German coalition talks collapse

Post Neon Knight on Mon 20 Nov - 19:54

I agree with what President Steinmeier said. The people have already voted so the politicians should cooperate. This is the flaw of proportional voting systems but they could use 2nd and 3rd preference votes to give one party a majority.


Last edited by Neon Knight on Mon 20 Nov - 20:24; edited 1 time in total

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Re: German coalition talks collapse

Post Neon Knight on Mon 20 Nov - 19:59

This is Steinmeier. I had no idea what he looked like and didn't know his name.


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Post Vendég on Mon 20 Nov - 20:13

"In a separate interview with the ZDF broadcaster, she argued Germany needed stability and a government "that does not need to seek a majority for every decision".

I have no idea that a democratic-minded politician how was able to tell such thing. Sounds kinda autocratic.

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Post Vendég on Mon 20 Nov - 20:15

@Neon Knight wrote:This is Steinmeier. I had no idea what he looked like and didn't know his name.


I didn't know him either.

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Re: German coalition talks collapse

Post Aëlwenn on Mon 20 Nov - 22:04

Bad new for Merkel, she has not many possibilities now..
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Continent longs for German Europe

Post Vendég on Wed 22 Nov - 20:02

Continent longs for German Europe

A weakened Berlin is bad news for the entire EU

By MATTHEW KARNITSCHNIG 11/22/17, 4:00 AM CET

BERLIN — For decades, the Continent has feared the specter of a “German Europe,” of domination by its biggest country.

These days Europe is more worried about what it will do without a strong German hand at the tiller.

The collapse of coalition talks in Berlin on Sunday is fueling concern that a political vacuum in Berlin could bring the European Union to an effective standstill as it confronts challenges big and small.

“It’s not a good sign for Europe that it’s taking so long,” Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov, whose country takes over the EU’s rotating presidency in January, said in Sofia on Monday.

Issues ranging from the EU budget to Brexit to reforming the eurozone will either be delayed or put on hold indefinitely until Germany has a new government.

Trouble is, no one knows when that will be.

On Tuesday, all signs pointed toward a new election. German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier met separately with the leaders of the Greens and the Free Democrats in an effort to nudge them toward compromise. But there was no sign of a breakthrough.

Chancellor Angela Merkel, who met with Steinmeier on Monday, reiterated her skepticism about the prospects of a minority government, saying she would prefer another election.

If that happens, Germany is unlikely to have a stable government until the summer, at the earliest. In the meantime, Merkel would continue to lead a caretaker government with the Social Democrats.

But with its mandate expired, the government’s ability to make important strategic decisions would be seriously constrained.

While some have speculated that France could take the lead in Europe, that seems unlikely, given the outsized importance Germany has in the bloc.

“Less Germany does not mean more France, it means less joint European action,” Ulrich Speck, of the Elcano Royal Institute, a think tank, wrote this week.

Reforms can wait

The first victim of Berlin’s paralysis is eurozone reform. Germany has been under pressure to engage with France over a series of reform proposals for the single currency area put forward by President Emmanuel Macron.

Macron has been eager to use the momentum after his May election to reinforce the architecture of the eurozone, which most policymakers agree is in sore need of repair.

“It is not in France’s interest for things to get blocked,” Macron said after the German coalition talks collapsed.

Securing such a deal with Germany would be difficult even it had an empowered government. Without one, it’s impossible.

“We’re in the middle of a phase in which we’re discussing whether and how to deepen European integration and a partner like Germany is of crucial importance,” said Austrian Finance Minister Hans Jörg Schelling.

For Schelling, the absence of German leadership hits close to home. He’s considered a top candidate to become the next head of the Eurogroup of eurozone finance ministers. The election is scheduled for December 4 but may now need to be delayed because of the political situation in Berlin.

A more immediate concern than Macron’s EU reform agenda are issues such as Brexit, the EU’s defense initiative and the budget negotiations.

In the U.K., some have speculated that the political limbo in Berlin could strengthen London’s hand in the talks.

“The political weakness of the strongest EU state makes our negotiating position stronger,” Tory MP Jacob Rees-Mogg told the Daily Mail, “With manifold domestic troubles not just in Germany, member states need a deal more than we do.”

Others have suggested the political situation in Berlin will have little impact on the negotiations.

“I don’t as it happens think that the German government will be in any way incapacitated either from negotiations in December or from going forward to do a great free trade deal with the U.K. in the course of the next 18 months,” Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said.

It’s more likely that Berlin will play an even less active role than it has up to now, deferring to Brussels and France instead. While Merkel hasn’t missed an opportunity to intone the importance of EU unity on Brexit, there has been some speculation, both in Germany and the U.K., that Berlin would pursue a more Britain-friendly course once talks enter phase two in order to safeguard its economic interests there.

That’s now unlikely. Instead, Merkel’s caretaker government will be at pains not to make any moves that could be construed as damaging European unity.

A crucial voice, silenced

Less clear is how Berlin will position itself on issues such as the EU’s disputes with Hungary and Poland over the rule of law. While Merkel has staked out critical positions on both fronts, it will now be difficult for her to take any decisive action. The same is true on the question of EU enlargement in the Balkans, where Germany’s voice has been crucial.

Meanwhile, Germany’s own interests are suffering as well. Berlin’s failure to secure the European Banking Authority for Frankfurt was seen by some in Germany as a direct result of the political disarray in Berlin.

“To steer things in the right direction would have required the full attention of those in power,” the business daily Börsen-Zeitung wrote Tuesday, calling it a “failure of Berlin diplomacy.”

Some in Berlin are still holding out hope that the Social Democrats can be convinced to give up their refusal to renew a grand coalition with Merkel’s conservatives. So far, party leader Martin Schulz, who is set to meet Steinmeier for talks Thursday, has insisted it’s not an option.

But with pressure from both within Germany and outside it, Schulz, who spent most of his political career in the European Parliament, may be forced to give in.

“We all have responsibility for our country,” parliament President Wolfgang Schäuble said in a speech to MPs on Tuesday in which he urged the parties to come together.

“Europe needs a Germany that can act.”

https://www.politico.eu/article/germany-coalition-merkel-continent-longs-for-german-europe/

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Re: German coalition talks collapse

Post Aëlwenn on Wed 22 Nov - 20:16

I just noticed Germany has religious political union ( Christian Democrats).
Weird.
It’s funny how some people think UK had advantage on négociation, it’s clearly not.
And Merkel or any other German government have never been indulgent to Brexit, and it’s not the advantage to Germany a soft Brexit. Germans want a hard Brexit, but Daily mail.. whatever.
If you want to learn the truth about Brexit, read Alex Taylor, a smart English active on Tweeter. It’s a writer, and post many of news about Brexit and how UK is isolate in négociation. The problems in Germany change nothing on this point, but maybe a bit difficult for change the EU.
But I think Macron come to lead this way.

PS: Atlantico is not really a good media. I personally prefer by far The Guardian, more objectives and honest.
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Re: German coalition talks collapse

Post Neon Knight on Wed 22 Nov - 21:43

@Aëlwenn wrote:I just noticed Germany has religious political union ( Christian Democrats).
Weird.
It’s funny how some people think UK had advantage on négociation, it’s clearly not.
And Merkel or any other German government have never been indulgent to Brexit, and it’s not the advantage to Germany a soft Brexit. Germans want a hard Brexit, but Daily mail.. whatever.
If you want to learn the truth about Brexit, read Alex Taylor, a smart English active on Tweeter. It’s a writer, and post many of news about Brexit and how UK is isolate in négociation. The problems in Germany change nothing on this point, but maybe a bit difficult for change the EU.
But I think Macron come to lead this way.

PS: Atlantico is not really a good media. I personally prefer by far The Guardian, more objectives and honest.

The Guardian is pretty much a left-wing bible Neutral



So The Independent (on-line only now) is probably your best bet.

http://www.independent.co.uk/

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The vision never dies, life's a never ending wheel
- R.J.Dio
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Re: German coalition talks collapse

Post Aëlwenn on Wed 22 Nov - 23:00

@Neon Knight wrote:
@Aëlwenn wrote:I just noticed Germany has religious political union ( Christian Democrats).
Weird.
It’s funny how some people think UK had advantage on négociation, it’s clearly not.
And Merkel or any other German government have never been indulgent to Brexit, and it’s not the advantage to Germany a soft Brexit. Germans want a hard Brexit, but Daily mail.. whatever.
If you want to learn the truth about Brexit, read Alex Taylor, a smart English active on Tweeter. It’s a writer, and post many of news about Brexit and how UK is isolate in négociation. The problems in Germany change nothing on this point, but maybe a bit difficult for change the EU.
But I think Macron come to lead this way.

PS: Atlantico is not really a good media. I personally prefer by far The Guardian, more objectives and honest.

The Guardian is pretty much a left-wing bible Neutral



So The Independent (on-line only now) is probably your best bet.

http://www.independent.co.uk/

Yes, but I think the Guardian is one of the best, if not the best, for investigation.
They have revealed the Snowden files Smile 1
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Cross-party support grows for Merkel minority government

Post Vendég on Thu 23 Nov - 19:23

Cross-party support grows for Merkel minority government

By JANOSCH DELCKER 11/23/17, 6:57 PM CET

SPD official describes chancellor running the country without a stable parliamentary majority as ‘far from ideal, but the lesser evil.’

BERLIN — Germany is bracing for a minority government.

As Europe’s pre-eminent political power seeks a way out of an unprecedented coalition deadlock, cross-party support is growing for the idea of Angela Merkel running the country without a stable parliamentary majority, according to officials from Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) and the Social Democrats (SPD).

The CDU’s deputy finance minister, Jens Spahn, said during a panel discussion in Berlin Thursday that he “supports trying a minority government” if talks with the SPD over renewing the “grand coalition” of the last four years fail.

Another high-ranking CDU official, from the conservative benches in the Bundestag, said such a solution, though inherently unstable, was preferable to calling a snap election which would prolong the crisis.

From the ranks of the SPD, which would provide external support for the conservative chancellor without re-joining her government as the junior coalition partner, one party official described such an arrangement as “far from ideal, but the lesser evil.” A minority government would avoid a snap election and also avoid angering grassroots SPD supporters who deeply dislike the idea of another grand coalition, the official said.

Germany was plunged into uncertainty late Sunday night when, two months after a general election, exploratory coalition talks collapsed between Merkel’s CDU, their Bavarian sister party the Christian Social Union, plus the liberal Free Democrats and the Greens. That left the SPD as the only viable partners who could give Merkel a parliamentary majority.

However, SPD chief Martin Schulz was quick to announce Monday that the party would not reprise its role of the past four years and would instead not “shy away” from another general election.

That triggered a major backlash inside his own party, where a growing number of lawmakers are worried that a snap election — and the spectacle of Germany’s two biggest parties in disarray — would risk an even more disastrous result for the SPD and further strengthen the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD).

In September, the AfD entered the national parliament for the first time, finishing third with nearly 13 percent of the vote, while Merkel’s conservatives and Schulz’s SPD lost heavily, with both parties scoring their worst results in over 60 years.

Stability pact

Schulz has interpreted September’s election result as a rejection of the grand coalition, meaning the SPD had no choice but to spend time in opposition while it regroups. Merkel — for whom another such alliance would be the surest way out of the coalition deadlock — has called on the SPD to reconsider. But if the SPD keeps its word, a minority government would be Merkel’s last resort other than facing fresh elections.

The chancellor has made no secret of her distaste for a minority government, which has never been tested at the national level in Germany for an entire term. It would be far from ideal for Merkel, forcing her to gather support from MPs in other groups whenever she wants to pass legislation.

At the same time, however, CDU officials in the Bundestag point out privately that a minority government would allow the longtime chancellor to fill all available cabinet posts with people from conservatives ranks, which could help her to silence a growing chorus of critical voices from inside her bloc.

Meanwhile — in what is widely understood as an attempt to raise pressure on SPD chief Schulz to consider the option — some Social Democrats have begun to publicly embrace the option of a minority government.

The regional SPD party chief in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany’s most populous state, told the Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger newspaper Thursday that his party should offer Merkel’s conservatives a “stability pact,” laying down conditions for supporting her minority government.

“Why should this model not work on the national level?” asked Michael Groschek, referring to previous experiences with minority governments in German regional assemblies.

https://www.politico.eu/article/angela-merkel-minority-government-support-germany/

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