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Merkel & the CDU’s Hollow Victory

September 29, 2017
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All eyes were on the German elections last week as Chancellor Angela Merkel and CDU party retained majority power, however lost 65 parliamentary seats to opposition parties, including the AfD (Alternative for Germany party), who won a surprising 13% of the vote. The AfD party is now the first far-right party in German parliament in over 50 years.

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The loss of 65 parliamentary seats will force Chancellor Merkel and the CDU party to negotiate and align with other parties in order to gain majority in parliament.   Many believe that the likely outcome is for Merkel and the CDU party to align with the smaller Green party and the FDP party. Both the Green and FDP parties have been around for quite some time now. The Green party, founded in 1980, as the name implies focuses heavily on environmental policies; renewable energy; and natural recourses. The FDP party, founded in 1948, is a strong advocate for free markets in business and legislation that promotes economic liberalism. As of now, both the Green and FDP parties have expressed their willingness to discuss a possible alignment with the CDU party, however it may be some time until a solid agreement is reached between all parties.

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Europe appears to have staved off far right political movements in France, the Netherlands, and now Germany, contradicting the predictions of many that Europe, like the US would too see far right politics dominate the political landscape. With this said, the uncertainty of a CDU-FDP-Green party alliance in Germany has lead to uncertainty in the European market, causing the Euro to drop for two consecutive days resulting in the lowest evaluation of the Euro in the month of September.

In the end Chancellor Merkel and the CDU party won a tough fight, but face an even tougher challenge as they attempt to regain majority control of parliament with a potential uneasy alliance.

If you are reading this blog and happen to be at IU next Monday October 2nd, please consider joining us in GISB 3067 from 12:00pm-1:30pm for a lecture by Dr. Joyce Mushaben from the University of Missouri – St. Louis titled “Immovable Object, Unstoppable Force: Angela Merkel, Vladimir Putin and the New Politics of Containment”

Sources:

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-41411979

http://www.cnn.com/2017/09/25/europe/merkel-german-election-coalition-choices/index.html

http://fortune.com/2017/09/24/angela-merkel-germany-election/

https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2017/sep/24/german-elections-2017-angela-merkel-cdu-spd-afd-live-updates

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