Saturday, April 1, 2017

Super 2017

Red Baron is always fascinated by America's Super Tuesdays. Here in Germany we are presently living through a Super Year with three state elections in spring and our federal election coming up on September 24.

Last Sunday people of Germany's smallest state, the Saarland, started Super 2017. They were called to the polls to elect a new state parliament. Here are the results that are by no means representative for the upcoming federal election but nevertheless are showing some general trends.

The CDU, Chancellor Merkel's party, gained an additional 5.5 % of the votes thanks to the excellent work of incumbent Ministerpräsident (Governor) Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer. An analysis showed that older people afraid of a Red-Red coalition between the Social Democrats and the Linke (Left) showed up at the polls in high numbers voting Christian Democrat. At the same time they were boosting voter turnout from 61.6 last time to 69.7 %.

The grand coalition partner SPD lost 1 % and some commentators concluded that the Martin Schulz effect did not work. That is fake news for before Schulz had been nominated chairman of the Social Democrats the party had trailed only at a meager 24 %.

The results were disastrous for the Greens with a mere 4 %. They will no longer be represented in the state parliament*. The ecological party has somewhat lost its reason of existence. Nowadays all German parties have a green touch more or less. In Germany a man made climate change is generally accepted and measures to limit the emission of CO2 are agreed upon although sometimes reluctantly. In addition, the recycling of materials is an absolute must for a country with only lignite as its major natural resource.
*In Germany there exists the so-called 5 % hurdle, i.e., a party must have gained at least 5 % of the votes cast to be represented in parliament.

The Free Democrats generally gain votes of discontented CDU voters but since there were not any failed their entry into the Saarländischer Landtag. Forget the Pirates who had their best time with protest voters around 2012. The fell out of the state parliament.

Nowadays protesters vote AfD (Alternative for Germany) but the mere 6.2% are a bitter disappointment when party officials had rather reckoned with a two digit result.

While fake news are à la mode the AfD produced a fake photo of Martin Schulz presenting him as a liar. Admittedly Martin is no beauty. Alienating his face and facebooking the photo is perfidious, a SPD colleague said, this shall deliver two messages: The hooked nose is the classical hallmark of the eternal Jew as used in the anti-Semitic Nazi propaganda, the puckered lips stand for naïvety. Martin's fake photo heavily backfired in the social media so the AfD withdrew the picture in the meantime.

Did you know that @POTUS congratulated Chancellor Merkel on her?? election victory at the Saar? Ouch! Who told him that fake news?

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