Newsblog: Wüst hopes that the AfD will go bankrupt in the NRW state elections

Dusseldorf/Essen.
The citizens of North Rhine-Westphalia will elect a new state parliament on Sunday. You can read the latest reports on the state election here in our news blog.

  • North Rhine-Westphalia elects a new state parliament.
  • Around 13 million citizens are called to vote on Sunday (May 15).
  • Who is running and how are they elected? We answer these and more questions in this text

Wednesday, 2:30 p.m: Prime Minister of North Rhine-Westphalia and CDU top candidate Hendrik Wüst is hoping for a defeat for the AfD in the state elections on Sunday. The party’s departure from the Schleswig-Holstein state parliament last Sunday should “be just the beginning,” Wüst told the t-online portal, according to a statement on Wednesday. The party’s defeat in the north was “a strong signal” for parliamentary culture, “because the AfD often poisons the democratic debate in parliament with its slogans.”

In the state elections in Schleswig-Holstein on Sunday, the AfD missed the five percent hurdle and thus missed entering the Kiel parliament. The party is represented in the other German state parliaments as well as in the Bundestag and the European Parliament. Current surveys for the state elections in North Rhine-Westphalia see the AfD at six to eight percent. In the 2017 election, the AfD achieved 7.4 percent there. (afp)


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Kuchaty (SPD) is courting votes from potential Greens voters

Wednesday 7:27 a.m.: The SPD’s top candidate Thomas Kutschaty is also courting the votes of potential Green voters: “The polls show: red-green is clearly ahead of black-yellow. But if you want an SPD-led government and no “business as usual” with the CDU, then you have to vote for the SPD. That is decisive for the game,” said Kuchaty. In fact, according to the latest polls, there would only be a slim or no majority for red-green. On the other hand, if the Greens joined forces with the Christian Democrats, they could – if the pollsters are right – form a coalition.

Greens top candidate Mona Neubaur said on Tuesday: “The stronger the Greens are, the higher the probability that it will be enough for a two-way constellation.” Neubaur did not say who she would prefer to form a coalition with. It is also “perhaps not so crucial” which man takes over the office of Prime Minister.

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Another survey sees the CDU in NRW slightly ahead of the SPD

Tuesday, 2:48 p.m.: A few days before the North Rhine-Westphalian state elections, another survey shows that the CDU has a slight lead over the SPD. In the survey by the opinion research institute Insa on behalf of the “Bild” newspaper (Wednesday), the CDU came to 31 percent and thus gained two percentage points compared to the last survey in April.

The SPD loses two points and stands at 29 percent. The Greens gain two points to 16 percent, the FDP loses two points and is now eight percent. The AfD is stagnating at seven percent, the left does not make it into the state parliament with three percent (-1). Other parties come to six percent (+1). For the survey, 1000 people were interviewed online. Most recently, an ARD poll showed that the CDU had a narrow lead over the SPD. (dpa)

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Green candidate Neubaur uses Kutschaty on a first-name basis and Wüst on the other

Tuesday, 1:45 p.m.: In her own words, the Greens’ top candidate, Mona Neubaur, has a good relationship with both SPD frontman Thomas Kutschaty and Prime Minister Hendrik Wüst (CDU). With Kuschaty she is on first-name terms, with Wüst she connects a “respectful and friendly “you”,” says Neubaur: “It could be that that will change.”

Depending on the outcome of the election, the Greens could form a coalition with both the CDU and the SPD. Neubaur said that she noticed that the NRW-CDU was already unlocking some “locks”. SPD and Greens had ruled before the current black-yellow coalition. (dpa)

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Kuschaty became a vegetarian because Schulze Föcking kept pigs

Tuesday, 12 p.m.: The top candidate of the SPD in North Rhine-Westphalia, Thomas Kutschaty, says he has been a vegetarian for several years – because of the so-called “pig affair” surrounding the then Environment Minister Christina Schulze Föcking (CDU). Kuschaty said this to journalists in Düsseldorf on Tuesday.

Kuschaty added to the German Press Agency that he had been toying with the idea for a long time. “When the pictures from the Schulze Föcking farm went through the media, the decision was clear for me to give up meat in the future. I’ve eaten a little meat before. But then I became a vegetarian.”

In 2017, “Stern TV” showed secret recordings from stables, which showed, among other things, pigs with their tails bitten off. Shortly before, Schulze Föcking had left the company as a co-owner, which her husband continued to run. There were no investigations against the former minister.

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Stamp would not take a group selfie during exploratory talks

Tuesday, 11:40 a.m.: The NRW refugee minister and FDP top candidate Joachim Stamp would not take a group selfie like the famous photo from the preliminary talks between the FDP and the Greens in Berlin. “There are also certain things that are iconic and it’s difficult to get upset when you try to imitate something like that,” Stamp told journalists in Düsseldorf on Tuesday.

That’s why he doesn’t have to take a selfie with Greens frontwoman Mona Neubaur, for example, according to Stamp: “That would be very artificial.” Stamp emphasized that the FDP was ready for talks with all democratic parties after the election – but gave for a government participation it already defaults. The FDP has “clearly defined issues” that must be anchored in a coalition agreement. “We’re not going to sell our souls for privileges or a company car,” Stamp said. (dpa)

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Survey on the state elections in North Rhine-Westphalia: concern about election manipulation is growing

Tuesday, 11:57 a.m.: In the North Rhine-Westphalian population, there is apparently a growing concern about vote rigging in the run-up to the state elections. In a survey, 83 percent of respondents from North Rhine-Westphalia said they were concerned that politically motivated disinformation campaigns could falsify the election results, as the State Media Authority of North Rhine-Westphalia, which commissioned the survey, announced on Tuesday in Düsseldorf. Compared to the September 2021 federal election, the number of citizens who fear such manipulation has increased. At that time, 78 percent of those surveyed nationwide had expressed concerns.

According to the information provided, the opinion research institute Forsa surveyed 1000 private Internet users aged 14 and over in North Rhine-Westphalia in mid-April. It is gratifying that the citizens surveyed now react more strongly to political disinformation when they encounter it, it said. According to the information, this is particularly true for young people. Among the under-25s who encountered allegedly politically motivated disinformation on the Internet, 83 percent dealt with the relevant message in more detail. 59 percent stated that they had already checked the information source, a third (34 percent) reported this to the portal used. (epd)

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Study: Election programs linguistically incomprehensible for many people

Monday, 5:43 p.m.: According to a study, the election programs for the NRW state elections remain linguistically incomprehensible for many people. The most common violations of comprehensibility rules include, for example, foreign words, technical terms, compound words, anglicisms, long sentences and nested sentences, as the University of Hohenheim explained on Monday in Stuttgart. In comparison to the last election, the parties also “learned nothing”.

With the help of analysis software, the Hohenheim researchers determine what is known as a “comprehensibility index” on a scale from 0 (difficult to understand) to 20 points (easily understandable). With an average of 8.2 points, the comprehensibility of the NRW election programs is as low as in the election five years ago. The most understandable program in terms of form was delivered by the CDU with 10.6 points, while the FDP came last with 6.2 points. (epd)

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State Returning Officer: Bring the ballot letter to the post office in good time

Monday, 3:45 p.m.: The state returning officer in North Rhine-Westphalia, Wolfgang Schellen, is appealing to postal voters to post their ballot letters for next Sunday’s state elections in good time. Since a high proportion of postal votes is to be expected, the ballot letter with the completed ballot paper and the signed ballot paper should be put in the mailbox by Wednesday so that it reaches the municipality on time, as Schellen explained on Monday. If ballot letters arrive after 6 p.m. on Sunday, they may no longer be included in the count. (dpa)

You can read more texts on the state elections in North Rhine-Westphalia here:


More articles from this category can be found here: State politics


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