• Germany's news in English

Althaus resigns as premier of Thuringia

DDP/The Local · 3 Sep 2009, 17:11

Published: 03 Sep 2009 17:11 GMT+02:00

The move likely clears the way for a coalition with the centre-left Social Democrats (SPD) following Sunday’s election in the eastern German state.

Althaus had been under pressure to resign after the CDU suffered horrendous losses in the election, plunging 12 percentage points to garner only 31.2 percent of the vote. That made the CDU's preferred coalition with the pro-business Free Democrats (FDP) impossible and handed the Social Democrats the role of kingmaker in Thuringia.

The state SPD leader Christoph Matschie has refused to accept a premier from the hard-line socialist party The Left, which won the second largest share of seats in Thuringia’s parliament, all but ruling out a left-wing coalition in the state.

The Left's leader in Thuringia, Bodo Ramelow called Althaus' resignation the "tragic end to a tragic premier," before urging the SPD to send the CDU into the opposition. "The resignation is not enough," he said.

The SPD made clear this week it was loath to form a coalition with the Christian Democrats with Althaus still as the helm. Matschie said on Thursday the SPD would still hold "equal" talks with both the conservatives and The Left before deciding on which coalition to pursue, but the socialists have rejected his demand to lead a left-wing government despite the SPD having fewer seats in parliament.

Story continues below…

The 51-year-old Althaus, who was convicted of negligent homicide and fined €33,300 for accidentally killing a woman while skiing last winter, was criticised for talking about the tragic incident during the election campaign.

The CDU politician, who was wearing a helmet at the time of the accident, still suffered major head injuries and took months to recover before returning to lead Thuringia.

DDP/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
I’m ashamed of Germany’s refugee failure: Green leader
Cem Özdemir. Photo: DPA

The head of the Green Party has responded angrily to Angela Merkel’s speech on refugees on Friday, saying he feels “ashamed at Germany’s failure".

German satirists mock Erdogan (and his penis)
Photo: DPA

Tempting fate?

Huge pro-Erdogan rally puts strain on Turkish community
Erdogan supporters at a rally in 2014. Photo: DPA

Tens of thousands of supporters of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan plan to rally in Cologne on Sunday, as tensions over Turkey's failed coup have put German authorities on edge.

How the Berlin startup scene is wasting its potential
Photo: DPA

"The truth is, there really isn't a truly successful international Berlin startup."

Five years' jail for German darknet weapons dealer
Photo: DPA

He had sold weapons to known Isis-sympathizers and far-right extremists.

Prickly Bavarian calls out cops on hedgehogs' noisy sex
Photo: DPA

Caught in the act.

International or German state school - which one's best?
Photo: DPA

Deciding between sending your child to a German state school or a private international school isn't easy. Max Bringmann has experienced both.

13 mortifying mistakes German learners always make

Sure-fire ways to get off on the wrong foot in the German language.

Captain Schweinsteiger retires from international football
Bastian Schweinsteiger. Photo: DPA

He has won a World Cup with Die Mannschaft and captained them at Euro 2016. On Friday Bastian Schweinsteiger announced his retirement from the national team.

Woman accused of false rape allegation at Cologne NYE
Cologne on New Year's Eve. Photo: DPA

According to latest reports, the woman was not even in Cologne on New Year's Eve.

Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Enter if you dare: Berlin's best abandoned haunts
IN PICTURES: How Munich responded to shooting spree
10 rookie errors all Brits make when they arrive in Germany
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Bavaria train attack: Were police right to shoot to kill?
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
How to get German citizenship (or just stay forever)
Brexit will turn Berlin into 'Europe’s startup capital'
Six soothing day trips to escape the bustle of Berlin
'Germany needs to make UK come to its senses'
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Six odd things Germans do in the summer
These 10 little-known German towns are a must see
Sponsored Article
Health insurance for expats in Germany: a quick guide
How two gay dads cut through German red tape to start a family
Five things to know about guns in Germany
10 things you need to know before attending a German wedding
Eight weird habits you'll pick up living in Germany
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Six reasons 'super-cool' Berlin isn't all it's cracked up to be
Only one country likes getting naked on the beach more than Germany
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
23 ridiculously fascinating things you never knew about Berlin
8 German words that perfectly sum up your 20s
Can't make it past the door at Berlin's most famous club? Help is at hand
Business & Money
Why Frankfurt could steal London's crown as Europe's finance capital
6 surprising things I learned about Germany while editing The Local
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd