Exploratory talks: Why the traffic light explorers are about to reach their destination

After the first exploratory days for a traffic light alliance, the parties make their first statements. These are the choices that are at stake.

Volker Wissing has closed his suit jacket, his two colleagues from the SPD and the Greens are wearing the jacket open. But all three are buttoned up: After two days of intensive explorations for a possible traffic light alliance, the General Secretaries speak in unison of good manners on Tuesday afternoon at the Berlin exhibition center Negotiating table – Otherwise adhere strictly to the self-imposed vow of silence. The party generals now want to pool the results by Friday and then draw a first balance sheet. “The moment of truth is now ahead of us,” says FDP man Wissing.

Since Monday morning, the three delegations have been dealing with the big, controversial issues – including climate protection, public finances, digitization, and Europe. It is now the task of the three general secretaries to write a joint paper by the end of the week, which will then form the basis for the next course: Recommend them Exploratory teams their party committees to start coalition negotiations?

Traffic lights should already be concrete Compromise have found

It is now about tough decisions, but: “I am in good spirits,” says SPD General Secretary Lars Klingbeil. Greens federal manager Michael Kellner is also optimistic: “The amount of similarities has increased, the amount of differences smaller.” FDP general secretary Wissing expresses himself, as at the first joint appearance, much more distantly: It is important now to have a common understanding of what has been agreed to reach. Especially among the liberals, there is great concern that in the end everyone will have their own interpretation – and that Project traffic light already starts in dissent. Also read: Crisis in the party leadership – what’s next for the CDU?

None of the three wants to talk about initial agreements in detail; media reports that have already been negotiated are not commented on publicly. According to a report by “Bild”, for example, the traffic light round should already be concrete Compromise have found. According to this, the Greens are said to forego a speed limit of 130, the FDP have agreed to a five-year early coal phase-out and all three parties have agreed to raise the minimum wage to twelve euros.

In the controversial question of the complete abolition of the Solis, according to the report, all three want the outstanding Judgment of the Federal Constitutional Court wait. There was no clear denial on Tuesday. But: It is said that possible compromise lines could look like this or something similar. However, it is still too early to define the details.

Tax and financial policy could lead to problems in negotiations

One of the central sticking points in the explorations are, above all, differences in tax and financial policy. At the weekend, Wissing affirmed the position of the FDP: “All of the interlocutors know our demands: none Tax increases and no easing of the debt brake ”. The SPD and the Greens, on the other hand, advocate increases in the top tax rate, among other things. Also interesting: Bundestag: This is how expensive the largest parliament of all time will be

The Greens also want to supplement the debt brake with an “investment rule” that should enable the infrastructure to be renewed. The SPD considers a longer-term departure from the rule that is currently underway because of the Corona-Crisis temporarily suspended, not for possible. It is speculated that a fund model could unlock funds for investments.

An agreement of the party leaders is worthless, however, if they the Party base does not take away. The most important question will therefore arise from Friday: How big is the backing of the three parties? Will the base move with you? It is quite possible that the break between the end of the exploratory process and the start of the coalition negotiations will drag on well into next week.

Greens want to let small party congress decide

Because: The Greens want formal feedback with the party, they want one small party congress convened. It has not yet been invited, says Kellner, but it is possible at short notice, a possible date would be Sunday. The FDP side also wants to reassure itself: Depending on the exploratory results, it could be that an okay from the federal executive committee is not enough for the Liberals, but that other parts of the party should be involved. Also read: Traffic light coalition: These are the demands made by medium-sized businesses

The idea behind it: the bigger the toads are that Lindner and his probers have to swallow, the more important a positive vote from the party would be. After the Jamaica negotiations In Schleswig-Holstein, the FDP even brought all members on board via online surveys.

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