• Germany's news in English
 

Main parties start tug-of-war for Greens

Published: 12 Nov 2012 12:48 GMT+01:00

The tug-of-war over the Greens was sparked by the weekend appointment of Katrin Göring-Eckardt and Jürgen Trittin as the party's election candidates.

The party elected two campaign leaders, and while Trittin was to be expected, the choice of Göring-Eckardt was a surprise, particularly as she was chosen by the party over leader Claudia Roth and parliamentary party leader Renate Künast.

The appointment was greeted by Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU), prompting Social Democratic Party (SPD) leader Sigmar Gabriel to call for the Greens to be clear that they were working towards a coalition between their two parties to force Merkel out of office.

The SPD has already stated it aims to form a government with the Greens - and is not interested in joining the CDU in a grand coalition after September 2013's parliamentary election.

"Voters want clarity and not a double game," Gabriel told the Süddeutsche Zeitung on Monday.

He said both parties needed to get all their voters into the polling booths. "We will not poach each other's voters. We both must mobilise our own members, then we can get a majority," he said.

The worry within the SPD, the paper suggested, was that the Greens could alienate their own supporters by keeping open the possibility of working with the CDU, and perform badly, leaving the SPD without a credible coalition partner. This happened in last year's Berlin state election where the SPD now rule with the CDU in a grand coalition.

The choice of Göring-Eckardt as half of the leadership duo prompted Priska Hinz, Green MP from Hesse and part of the pragmatic wing of the party, to call for a "strictly independent election campaign - at the end of the day we are not an appendage of another party."

It was obvious, said Hinz, that it was "important to the members that we can also push further into the middle-classes, therefore they decided for Katrin Göring-Eckardt."

The Greens have also recently distanced themselves from the SPD following a scandal over party leader Peer Steinbrück's highly paid speeches.

Merkel's CDU might be open to forming a coalition with the Greens as their preferred partner, seeing as the the Free Democrats (FDP) seem set to be wiped off the electoral map in the coming election.

Roth, considered a crucial member of the Green leadership, admitted being deeply wounded by her poor performance, calling it a bitter defeat.

"The election was a success. It showed what internal party democracy is all about, because we have a clear verdict, because it was a really good election," she said in a press conference on Monday.

She had worked to introduce the vote which gave all the party's members a say in who would lead the general election campaign

There was concern that Roth may have been so disappointed that she would not stand for re-election to the party leadership, but she said she would do so - the internal party vote on that is next weekend.

The Local/hc

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

16:22 November 12, 2012 by lucksi
I too would like to know which party allies with which. They may say now that a grand coalition is not on the table and that the greens ally with the SPD. But they are all power hungry liars, so everythign they say before the election is moot anyway.
16:29 November 12, 2012 by McM
As an outsider and observer only I can only say how bizzare the German Green party present themselves. This little internal shake up seems well overdue if they are going to leave behind their 'against everything' and 'for nothing' popularist image before the next election. It costs nothing to feel good about oneself by proclaiming micro economic policies and a fascination with tree hugging but I suspect German voters may need more than this kinf of leadership circus if they are going to avoid the pointy end of the current economic situation still prevailing in the Euro zone.
12:42 November 13, 2012 by StoutViking
The Green had long gone rotten and turned brown. Why isn't thelocal reporting on how the Greens had announced cooperation with the terror group FATAH? How the fat lady proclaimed they share "common values"... What are these values? Anti-semitism and freeloading?
Today's headlines
Train drivers' strike to hit Wednesday, Thursday
Train drivers' union (GDL) leader Claus Weselsky (l) on a picket line in March. Photo: DPA

Train drivers' strike to hit Wednesday, Thursday

Train drivers will return to the picket lines on Tuesday afternoon after negotiations with rail operator Deutsche Bahn (DB) fell through on Friday. Passenger services will be hit on Wednesday and Thursday. READ  

Five things to know about weed in Germany
Photo: DPA

Five things to know about weed in Germany

The stoner holiday of 4/20 may not be as popular in Germany as in its homeland the United States, but weed is nonetheless a hot topic in Europe’s largest economy. For the hemp holiday on Monday, The Local shares five things you should know about weed in Germany. READ  

Migrant boat tragedy
Merkel: We must stop migrant traffickers
Refugees on the deck of an Italian navy ship in April 2014. Photo: DPA

Merkel: We must stop migrant traffickers

Chancellor Angela Merkel said Monday that "everything" would be done to prevent more migrants dying in the Mediterranean in their quest for a better life in Europe. READ  

Salafists giving kids martial arts lessons
Police arrest a terror suspect in Mönchengladbach in January. Photo: DPA

Salafists giving kids martial arts lessons

Members of a Salafist group in western Germany have been giving lessons in martial arts to local kids, police reports revealed on Monday. READ  

Holocaust survivors speak before Nazi trial
Two Holocaust survivors at the press conference in Lüneberg. Photo:Dpa

Holocaust survivors speak before Nazi trial

Holocaust survivors spoke at a press conference on Monday before the beginning of the trial of Oscar Gröning, a 93-year-old man who worked at Auschwitz concentration camp during the Second World War. READ  

Football fans abuse AfD head on train
Alternative for Germany leader Bernd Lucke with Deputy Alexander Gauland. Photo: DPA

Football fans abuse AfD head on train

Two football fans hurled abuse at Bernd Lucke, the leader of the right-wing Alternative for Germany party, as he tried to eat dinner with his wife on a train from Berlin to Cologne on Saturday. READ  

Meet new Dortmund boss Thomas Tuchel
Thomas Tuchel: the young pretender. Photo: DPA

Meet new Dortmund boss Thomas Tuchel

Borussia Dortmund have named ex-Mainz manager Thomas Tuchel as Jürgen Klopp's successor. But the legendary coach who steered BVB from strength to strength will be a tough act to follow. READ  

Woman takes equal pay battle to highest court
Edeltraud Walla in her University of Stuttgart workshop. Photo: DPA

Woman takes equal pay battle to highest court

A university worker in Stuttgart has fought a battle with her employer over unequal pay all the way to the Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe, as the government mulls a new law on gendered compensation. READ  

Nuremberg man injures three in car attack
The aftermath of the crash in Nürnberg. Photo:DPA

Nuremberg man injures three in car attack

A 42-year-old man drove his car into a crowd sitting outside a cafe in Nuremberg on Sunday evening, seriously injuring three men. Police said they suspect that the crash was deliberate. READ  

Union plans new rail strikes this week
Deutsche Bahn intercity trains. Photo: DPA

Union plans new rail strikes this week

Train drivers' union GDL said on Monday that passenger services as well as freight could be hit by strikes this week, after talks over pay, conditions and union representation failed on Friday. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Politics
A Greek learning politics in Germany
Features
The battle of the "Gates of Berlin"
National
Germany's favourite baby names of 2014
National
Germany's 'very poor' lobbying record
National
VIDEO: Mario Draghi suffers anti-ECB confetti attack
Politics
Merkel's 15 years at the top of German politics
Shutterstock
Sponsored Article
10 things you didn’t know about Zagreb (and why you should go)
Features
Spice up asparagus season with The Local's serving suggestions
Sponsored Article
What expat parents should ask before choosing a school
Travel
Lowest of the low: how woman exploited Germanwings crash
Sport
Football and the €30,000 firework
Technology
Why scientists oppose killer robots
National
Germanwings co-pilot 'searched suicide info'
Technology
Electrifying 'Ostalgia'
National
Which city is Germany's worst for drivers?
National
'Cannibal cop' gets 8 years
Can the 'nightmare' of a pilot downing a plane be prevented?
National
LIVE: Co-pilot suspected of crashing plane
Pupils mourn lost classmates
National
Freed after 25 years on death row
National
Cologne Cathedral returns from space
Features
Paddy's Day, Berlin style
Is your workload 'out of control'? You're not alone...
National
Why east Germans are happy to get it on on camera
National
What would you do with a 250-year-old pretzel?
Features
Just why is the German flag Schwarz, Rot, Gold?
Business & Money
Getting German workers and bosses thinking positive
National
Uplifting thoughts to get you through the last week of winter
National
Who wants the Olympics more - Hamburg or Berlin?
National
Last-minute drama of Germany's Eurovision 2015 entry
National
German photographer takes world's top prize
Features
Meet the woman getting Germans to drink more – and better – beer
Gallery
Get inspired for International Women's Day with German heroes
Green party proposes first-ever cannabis legalization plan
Gallery
In pictures: Germany's seven most livable cities
National
Singapore canes Germans for train graffiti
Politics
Surprise! Germans love feeling like they run the EU
Politics
Anger over plan to show women what men earn
Travel
Munich tram fans bicker over new bell
Features
Kafka: puzzling translators 100 years on
Business & Money
France or Germany: Which country really is the best country to work in?
Photo: Police
Rhineland
Student driver crashes tank into family garden.
Photo: DPA
Politics
There was a notable absence at the Anti-Semitism Commission
National
How Dresden bombing still divides Germany, 70 years on
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Take a cute break with this gallery of baby animals
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

7,165
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd