News Digest Item
01 Dec 2017

Economic council of Merkel’s CDU against renewal of coalition with SPD

CDU Economic Council / Süddeutsche Zeitung

The Economic Council of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative CDU says the party should give serious consideration to a minority government, in order to avoid a new grand coalition with the Social Democrats (SPD). In a statement, the economic council said a grand coalition would only be possible if the CDU agreed to the SPD’s demands on welfare policy, which it says are “far too costly”. The council also argues that a renewal of the CDU-SPD coalition would weaken both parties, strengthening the far-right and far-left fringes of German politics. The CDU's Economic Council is no internal party organ but rather a business association positioning itself close to the CDU's economic policy principles. 
On Thursday, German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier met with the party leaders of the CDU, its Bavarian sister party the CSU, and the SPD, to sound out a possible coalition. According to the Süddeutsche Zeitung, Social Democratic Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said his party would not rush into a decision on exploratory talks with the conservatives. “Nobody should expect this to happen quickly,” Gabriel said.

Read the council’s statement in German here and the article in German here.

See CLEW’s Coalition Watch and the article on Government gridlock for background.

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