Analysis

Two recent regional elections have seen the governing coalition (CDU/CSU/SPD) suffer major setbacks and have put the survival of the grand coalition at risk. The poor results  hastened Angela Merkel’s decision to step down as CDU Chairman in December and formally announce that she will not run for another term as Chancellor. Her preferred candidate,  Annegret Kramp-Kareenbauer, was elected to succeed her.

The SPD have reacted to their poor showing in Hesse and Bavaria by conducting an evaluation of their key demands from the coalition upto autumn 2019. If these have not been met, the assumption is they would withdraw from the government. Former SPD leader Sigmar Gabriel has said he expects the coalition government to break up by the EP elections at the latest , making way for the original Jamaica coalition (CDU/CSU/FDP/Greens) foreseen after the federal elections.

In the Hesse elections on 28 October both the CDU and SPD saw their support drop by 10%. The CDU remain the largest party on 27% but lost voters to the Greens and AfD in almost equal measure. The SPD collapse to 19.8% saw them only just pip the Greens to 2nd place but they have seen their support collapse even further since joining with the CDU in government again. The big winners were the Greens, who as in Bavaria, seem to be overtaking the Socialists as the progressive party. They almost doubled in size to just under 20%. The current coalition in Hesse between the CDU and Greens could just survive another term. The AfD scored 13% and are now installed in each of the 16 Laender. The Liberals FDP won 7.5% and the far-left Die Linke 6.3% – both an improvement on their 2013 results.

The elections in Bavaria on 14 October were as disastrous for the CSU as had been feared, dropping by about 10% to its lowest level for half a century. It received only 37.2% of the vote.  The result was just as bad for the Socialists, who were pushed into 4th place on under 10% of the vote – an historic low.

The big winners on the night were the Greens who moved into 2nd place on 17.5%, followed by Free Wahler on 11.6%, whose 1 MEP, Arne Gericke sits in the ECR group. The Liberals (FDP) only just scraped into the Landtag on 5.1% and the far-left Die Linke failed to reach the 5% threshold. All the talk had been on the rise of the AfD, who did well getting 10.2% but hardly a landslide.

Germany will not introduce thresholds for the EP elections, effectively meaning that small parties will only need to get 1% of the vote to have an MEP elected. This is likely to result in a number of small, single issue MEPs.

 

EPP (33 MEPs)

MEPs standing down include Karl-Heinz Florenz ((North Rhine-Westphalia); Reimer Böge (…

S&D (27 MEPs)

In finalising the list, the party has kept faith with the majority of sitting MEPs who…

ECR (6 MEPs)

The former AfD Members who have remained in the ECR group have not announced their…

ALDE (4 MEPs)

The FDP have elected Nicola Beer to head its list, with the party hoping to see its…

GUE (8 MEPs)

No news on Die Linke.

GREENS (13 MEPs)

Ska Keller and Sven Giegold will head the lists for the Greens who are benefiting from…

EFDD 1 MEP

The head of list, Jorg Meuthen is the only surviving member of the AfD members elected in…

Other

The former Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis will head the list in Germany for the…

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#AfD
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