Beating Merkel

Germany’s Left Mulls Broad Alliance

ARCHIV - SPD-Chef Sigmar Gabriel spricht am 18.01.2016 während einer Pressekonferenz in einem historischen Landgut in Nauen (Brandenburg). Foto: Ralf Hirschberger/dpa (zu dpa «Rot-rot-grüne Lockerungsübungen» vom 18.10.2016) +++(c) dpa - Bildfunk+++
SPD head Sigmar Gabriel allegedly held secret talks with members of the Greens and Left Party on Tuesday evening.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    Germany’s center-left Social Democrats are weighing the possibility of a left-leaning alliance with the opposition Greens and Left Party to oust Chancellor Angela Merkel after the 2017 election.

  • Facts


    • There has never been an alliance between the SPD, Left Party and Greens at the national level. A coalition between the three parties was formed for the first time in the state of Thuringia in 2014.
    • The Left Party wants to dismantle NATO, is strictly opposed to foreign military missions and wants big increases in government spending.
    • Talks took place on Tuesday night between members of the SPD, Left Party and Greens to sound out common ground ahead of the 2017 election.
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Despite all the domestic criticism of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s refugee policy, her conservative Christian Democrats remain the strongest political force. If she decides to run for a fourth term in the fall 2017 election, few political pundits will put money on her losing.

Germany’s three left-of-center parties, including the Social Democrats who have been junior partners in a coalition with her since 2013, are well aware that the only way to unseat her may be to form an alliance.

A coalition between the SPD, Greens and Left Party, dubbed R2G (an acronym for red-red-green), would be unprecedented nationally but not at the state level, where the first R2G government was formed in the eastern state of Thuringia in 2014.

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