June 13, 2024

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Berlin turns right for the first time in twenty-two years

Berlin turns right for the first time in twenty-two years

Right is back in Berlin. Barring a last-minute surprise, Christian Democrat Kai Wegner (CDU) will be elected on Thursday, April 27, as the head of the German capital, which has been held by the Social Democratic Party (SPD) since 2001. However the latter did not join the opposition: having come second behind the CDU in the February 12 elections, the SPD has decided to join forces with the latter to form a majority. The result: Outgoing mayor Francesca Kiffi, who ruled the city for two years with the Greens and the leftist Die Linke, will be deputy mayor in charge of the economy in the new CDU/SPD coalition led by conservative Kai Wegner. .

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No one could have imagined such a scenario. Franziska Kiffi, who was elected mayor of Berlin in 2021, should remain in place until 2026. But with several irregularities found, a fresh ballot was organized on February 12, leading to unexpected results. First, the CDU’s victory was much larger than expected, coming out on top with 28.2% of the vote, an increase of 10.2 points compared to 2021. Then, the sharp decline of the SPD, which received only 18.4% (minus three points). ), its worst score in Berlin at the end of World War II. On February 12, out of more than two million registered voters in the city of Berlin, the SPD narrowly retained its second place, with a lead of only fifty-three votes over the Greens.

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Numerically, the Social Democrats could have tried to create a new left majority. But after a few days, Mr.me Giffey had to face the facts. Rather than trying to hold on to his top spot in a left-wing coalition where his relations with the Greens and Ty Linke have soured significantly, the outgoing mayor preferred to take the hand the Christian Democrat leader extended to him. An alliance with the center-right party is not unnatural for Angela Merkel’s (CDU) family minister from 2018 to 2021, who had to leave the federal government after allegations of plagiarism targeting her doctoral thesis.

Lots of gifts

Unlike M.me Giffy, the future mayor of the German capital, is little known to the general public. Mr. from Spanda, a bourgeois district of West Berlin. Wegner belongs to the conservative wing of the CDU. In the last elections, he came out on top in all districts except the city center, dominated by environmentalists.The 50-year-old former insurer, a member of the Bundestag from 2005 to 2021. -Wing propaganda, epitomized by posters with simple slogans like “More Security, More Police” Or “Berlin, a city for everyone, even motorists”.

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