Germany's SPD: No decision on entering coalition talks

Kristopher Drake
December 4, 2017

The leader of Germany's Social Democrats (SPD) said on Friday he ruled out no option for forming a new government but stressed that a re-run of the outgoing "grand coalition" with Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives was not a done deal.

Schulz met Merkel and Horst Seehofer, the leader of the chancellor's Bavarian allies, on Thursday night for talks hosted by President Frank-Walter Steinmeier aimed at breaking Germany's post-election political deadlock.

"There was a broad consensus about not closing down any options concerning the formation of a new government", Schulz told reporters.

In a sign of the ongoing friction between Schulz and Merkel's bloc that may make negotiations hard, he blamed the Bild report on a leak from her side and said he had telephoned her Friday to say it was "unacceptable". "The way that erroneous reports are circulated destroys trust". Her attempts to form a three-way tie-up with the pro-business Free Democratic party (FDP) and the Greens failed.

"The people have voted, and I absolutely do not favour, if we can't do anything with the result, asking people to vote again", Merkel said on Saturday at a party conference of her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) in Kuehlungsborn, northeast Germany, Xinhua reported citing Focus Online.


The unusually testy tone Schulz struck is a reflection of the differences between conservatives and Social Democrats not just over the policies of a possible grand coalition, but whether even to try to form one at all.

Martin Schulz, the leader of the rival Social Democrats (SPD), told an interview with Spiegel magazine he would insist on deeper integration as a condition of joining any new government under Mrs Merkel. Merkel has said in the past she does not want to lead a minority government.

After the party convention of the SPD in the coming week, the CDU will discuss the way forward, according to Klaus Schueler, federal manager of the CDU.

"We remain clear: the SPD's rejection of a continued grand coalition was mandatory and right", says the petition.

"A positive response to Emmanuel Macron will be a key demand in any negotiation with the SPD".

Other reports by Ligue1talk

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