In Germany, the weak party (the SPD) won with the strong candidate (Olaf Scholz), beating the strong party (the CDU) with the weak candidate (Armin Laschet). The last few hours from the counting of the ballots can thus be summarized, which confirmed the victory at the points of the Social Democrats with 25.7% in clear growth on the 24.1% obtained by the CDU / Csu in sharp decline. In a presidential and majority system, Scholz would be the new head of government in pectore but in the Federal Republic whoever brings together the absolute majority of the members of the Bundestag becomes chancellor. To lead the next government, the Social Democratic candidate therefore needs the support of the Greens and the Liberals, two parties, like his, who have emerged stronger from the polls. The only alternative would be a return to the grand coalition with the CDU, with reversed sides, with the Social Democrats at the helm and the moderates in the role of minority shareholders. A hypothesis that no one likes at the moment. So on Monday Scholz called for the formation of a social, environmental and liberal government. The hypothesis of the coalition of the winners, however, excites the left more than the Liberals: it is the social term, which often rhymes with taxes, which does not inflame the hearts of Christian Lindner’s party, more interested in lowering taxes to stimulate the transformation of German economy in an environmental sense. Scholz’s ambitions, on the other hand, find solace in the words of the Green leader Michael Kellner who, speaking to Ard, listed the points of contact between his party and the SPD: a more inclusive welfare, higher taxes for the wealthier classes, a touch up to the increase in the legal minimum wage and investments to transform the country’s infrastructure in the direction of sustainability. Confident, Scholz enjoyed answering a British journalist in English during a press conference on Monday morning. A small show to demonstrate his competence and ability also on an international level.
Laschet for his part is convinced that he still has the cards to lead the next government by allying himself with the Greens and the Liberals. Shutting both eyes on the electoral collapse, Laschet invoked the “clear mandate” received by the voters to form the government. Laschet can boast excellent relations with the Liberals with whom he rules in his North Rhine-Westphalia. His problem, if anything, is the climate of reckoning that is growing in a party still in shock at having reached the minimum electoral level since the postwar period. Many CDU / Csu executives today do not think about the government but about taking revenge. “You cannot have any pretensions to form a government when it comes to second place,” Bavarian governor and CSU leader Markus Söder put his hands on.
To the ruthless court of Laschet and Scholz, Verdi and Liberali responded by deciding, surprisingly, to consult each other, to verify the points of contact between their respective programmatic platforms and only then to turn to one of the suitors. Scholz also hoped for the formation of the next government by Christmas but in truth the time factor is with him: the Social Democratic Party is grateful to him for having interrupted a long series of electoral blows and for having been able to intercept the favor of so many Germans. On the contrary, Laschet is on the grill and will be forgiven by his climbing partners only if he can bring home Angela Merkel’s chair.