Tough talks ahead within grand coalition on financing of coal exit – opinion
Now that the coal exit commission has reached an agreement on how Germany could phase out the fossil fuel, the federal grand coalition government must prepare for tough negotiations between the Social Democrats (SPD) and the conservative CDU/CSU alliance on how it will be financed, writes Daniel Wetzel in an opinion piece in Die Welt. Chancellor Angela Merkel must supply eastern lignite mining states with ample support, as “she does not want to drive more protest voters into the arms of the [right-wing, populist] AfD” in autumn’s regional elections. Finance minister Olaf Scholz’s SPD, however, “does not have anything to gain, politically” in lignite state Saxony, and holds no responsibility in western North Rhine-Westphalia, either, writes Wetzel. The CDU/CSU “needs the coal compromise more urgently than the SPD”, providing Scholz with some leverage in future negotiations, writes Wetzel.