Merkel welcomes centre-left's OK for coalition

06 March, 2018, 02:47 | Author: Bert Pena
  • Merkel Welcomes German Govt Deal Handing Her 4th Term			AFP  Stefanie Loos		by Breitbart London5 Mar 20180		5 Mar 2018		5 Mar 2018

Both Merkel's conservatives and the SPD are under pressure to appear distinctive to voters in a coalition borne out of necessity rather than choice, making it hard for Merkel to balance conflicting demands.

SPD's acting party Chairman Olaf Scholz said the coalition "gives us the strength for the process of renewal we are embarking upon".

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.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives have formed a coalition government with the opposition Social Democrats.

But the two blocs' weak performances in last September's election, when they both suffered their worst results since Germany became a republic in 1949, mean the latest incarnation of their awkward alliance promises to be the most fractious yet.

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

FDP leader Christian Lindner told the Funke Mediengruppe newspaper chain that another election would be the best solution if SPD members voted 'No.' He ruled out revisiting a three-way coalition, given the platforms of the parties involved.

European partners waiting impatiently for Germany to end its longest stretch of coalition haggling since the end of the war heaved a sigh of relief, with French President Emmanuel Macron calling the SPD decision 'good news for Europe'.

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Its leaders have vowed to "hunt" Merkel, though so far AfD's novice lawmakers have stood out mainly by failing to grasp parliamentary procedures and putting forward motions all other parties reject.

Macron's ambitious reform plans for further integration of the euro zone had been put on hold for months by the absence of a new government in Germany.

Merkel also wants to serve a full fourth term rather than yield before her time is up.

However, the new "Grand Coalition" will also make the AfD the largest opposition party in the Bundestag.

The CDU have appointed three men and three women to fill their six cabinet posts under the coalition agreement and the SPD are expected to do the same.

Ralf Stegner, current leader of the SPD in Schleswig-Holstein, told local TV Phoenix that the vote is a good government basis, and the 33 plus percent who voted against the Grand Coalition would be a reminder.

"I congratulate the SPD on this clear result and look forward to continuing to work together for the good of our country", she said on Twitter. It has sunk to an all-time low in survey by Emnid published on Saturday.

"In 2021 at the latest, they'll pay the price", the party tweeted.

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