As surprising as the start of coalition negotiations between the CDU and SPD in Berlin is, it is good for the capital. If there is a Groko there, a senate will be replaced, which is the symbol and cause of multiple failures. Red, green and dark red are close when it comes to ideas about society, but have found that they cannot be implemented without causing chaos. The farce about the de-urbanization of Friedrichstrasse is just one example.
In the repeat election after seven years of R2G, the Berliners sent a clear, if not unequivocal, signal. Departure, yes, including modern traffic concepts and environmental policy, but at a reasonable pace and linked to internal security.
Many Berlin SPD voters wanted an alliance with the CDU in the last election, and Franziska Giffey is said to have flirted with it. At that time she could not assert herself in her national association, which relied on left-wing romanticism.
If the new coalition is formed, Giffey himself will pay the highest price - in a manner that commands respect. She gives up her leadership role and must now serve instead of leading. Those who are only selfish don't do such things. Giffey doesn't stick to the office. It remains to be seen whether it is feasible for her – and her future boss Kai Wegner – that the then ex-governing member remains a member of the Senate. Giffey, like her or not, is an alpha person. She was mayor of Neukölln, she was federal minister, then head of the Senate. She was always in the light for eight years.
Gerhard Schröder is certainly a very special ego machine, but the contempt he hurled at Angela Merkel after she lost the 2005 election, when she remarked that the previous senior was now the junior spoke volumes. This role change is almost inhumanly difficult. In the past year and a half, the Green Bettina Jarasch has learned that Giffey is not necessarily known for leaving wide spaces.
Wegner, a newcomer to the top position, will often look around and see his experienced predecessor roll his eyes. The two have to find a fair and open personal relationship with each other quickly and resiliently. Otherwise this experiment threatens to fail. And a potential SPD replacement for Giffey would definitely be someone from the Olympic pool-sized pool of left-wing parties. That would be fatal for Berlin.
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