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Nerves at war: The cooperation of the traffic light coalition was never a matter of course

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It’s been a year – and it feels like an eternity: the traffic light election. More precisely: the election that led to the formation of the first coalition of red, yellow and green at the federal level. This constellation has it all, right from the start and anyway. Because these three are not “born” partners; among themselves, since yes, so in each case with the SPD.

But working together is not a matter of course, which is why it has to be practiced again and again, from the very beginning and to this day. Will that work out in the long run, until the next election in three years?

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The dispute over the gas surcharge these days is a good example of how difficult it is. Invented by Robert Habeck, the climate minister and first vice-chancellor, to cushion additional costs for importers due to failed Russian deliveries, now demonstratively questioned by finance minister and second vice-chancellor Christian Lindner – and the chancellor, Olaf Scholz, is keeping a low profile for the time being.

Now Lindner should check Habeck’s plan

Incidentally, this is part of the Chancellor’s method Scholz: wait, watch, and if the others are weak, it then runs straight to him. He’s got the nerve. In the meantime, Habeck is asking Lindner to check whether the gas levy is in line with the financial constitution.

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Because he himself had concerns; which are widely shared, from SPD chairman Lars Klingbeil to CSU boss Markus Söder. Bringing about a decision here becomes a matter for the chancellor. And makes him look better than the others.

But that brings us to the effects of forming a government. After that, there was a demonstrative agreement. A completely different style was needed, one that complemented each other. What Scholz doesn’t have – this eloquent, empathetic demeanor – the top Greens and top Liberals wanted to bring in in different ways. Then to conquer the future with reforms.

Lindner also appeared inspired in this way; the potential office of the government’s top money manager with the right to veto exhilarated him so much that he repeatedly emphasized the social aspects of financial policy action, he sounded downright socially liberal.

And Annalena Baerbock with her Co Habeck: In the end, they seemed happy that the perceived election defeat – the fall from the top spot in polls with the prospect of possibly appointing the chancellor – was relatively mild.

The Greens under Annalena Baerbock and Robert Habeck were close to the Chancellery in polls before the election.
© Ina Fassbender/AFP

Now, in office, the full force of responsibility has hit them all. The war, the energy crisis, Corona – people are working around the clock to keep the situation under control, the reliability of which lies in the fact that it is constantly changing. Tinnitus and burnout not only threaten Habeck’s employees.

The nerves are on edge, the confidentiality of the initiation phase gives way to attacks on the open stage. Surely nobody imagined that.

The government is feeling the sympathy of everyone in society because of the situation. Dissatisfaction with all of them far outweighs satisfaction, and polls show that if there were an election today, this coalition would have a hard time.

What their hope is: that their beneficial actions, as they see it – done a lot right, pragmatically and quickly – will unfold before everyone’s eyes and that voting out would therefore be unfair. But nothing is certain in these times, not even that.

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Source: Tagesspiegel

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