Germany: Merkel's fate hangs on outcome of membership vote


Germany: Merkel's fate hangs on outcome of membership vote

The SPD's "green light" is a sign to stabilize the European Union after the Brexit.

Now that the Social Democratic Party (SPD) membership has voted to form a coalition with Angela Merkel's conservative bloc, all the obstacles to the German chancellor's fourth term in office have been removed. Germany's parties have struggled to form a governing coalition, leaving Merkel in charge of a caretaker government since a September election. Via the CDU's official Twitter account, Merkel said, "I congratulate the SPD on this clear result and I'm looking forward to continuing our good work together for the good of the country".

The centre-left SPD had furiously debated whether to extend the "grand coalition" for four more years after it slumped in last year's election.

The two blocs reached a 179-page coalition agreement document in early February, detailing the main issues such as policy orientations, spending and which party will name ministers in the new government. "We now have clarity". Much of the talk leading up to the final tally was that the party was evenly split and that the vote could easily go either way, but it appears SPD Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks had the more accurate assessment when she came out on Thursday to say the vote would most like end with 60-percent in favor of joining the coalition agreement.

Merkel made the comments in her weekly podcast, published on March 3, in which she said that Germany and France have chose to place "more emphasis than in the past" on the proposal, and that both governments will "push on with the common corporation tax" idea. Both sides had been weakened as voters angry about the arrival of more than a million asylum seekers in Germany since 2015 turned to the far-right party Alternative for Germany (AfD). With the SPD's emphatic decision to move forward with a new partnership, Merkel is expected to launch her fourth government by mid-March.

"I'm pleased about the result of the SPD members' vote", he said in a statement. After the second Grand Coalition between 2013 and 2017 as a junior coalition partner, the share fell to 20.5 percent in September elections.

Merkel also appreciates the importance of a future government for Europe.

Had the longtime German leader faced a "no" result, she would have been left with only two realistic options: forming a minority government or seeking a new election.



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