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Friday, September 13, 2013 9:06 PM

Political Poker in Germany; Grand Coalition Possibilities Increase

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On several occasions I stated there would not be a "grand coalition" following the next Germany election.

The "grand coalition" is defined as a Merkel's CDU/CSU party forming an alliance with the opposition SPD party.

The reason I came to that conclusions for five reasons.

  1. The leader of SPD ruled out a grand coalition
  2. The eurosceptic AfD party was (and still is) likely to make parliament
  3. There is a chance SPD + Greens + the Far Left (Die Linke) could put together an unstable majority
  4. CDU/CSU + AfD (with or without FDP) could form a stable coalition
  5. Even if the grand coalition thesis had the highest probability, the odds were still under 50%

Odds Change

I am not changing my prediction, but I am changing the odds.

When the data changes, you have to reconsider. And the data changed. SPD leader Peer Steinbrück has changed his mind about entering a grand coalition.

Via unmodified choppy Google-Translate from Der Spiegel, please consider Discussions about possible grand coalition: Steinbrueck rises leadership.
The goal of Peer Steinbrueck choice is clear: The SPD's top candidate wants after the election on 22 September chancellor of a red-green coalition will. Should there not be enough for it, he has a cabinet post in a grand coalition with the CDU have always excluded. Nevertheless Steinbrueck wants to be in the event of an election defeat SPD negotiator in talks with the Union.

"I'll stay in the driver's seat after the election," the challenger Angela Merkel said after SPIEGEL ONLINE information on recently familiar. Even if it is not enough for red-green, wants Steinbrueck the possible coalition negotiations with the CDU and CSU say in authoritative.
Political Poker

Was Steinbrück lying then, or now? Or both? Is this a game to win votes? Or a real change of heart? Or no change of heart, just a lie the entire time?

Quite frankly, I do not know. What I do know is that, in general, politicians will lie cheat and steal to stay in power.

Should the opportunity present itself, would Steinbrück enter a coalition with Die Linke even though he said he wouldn't?

Why not? He said he would not enter one with CDU/CSU and changed his mind. Might not he do so again? Might this all be a game of political poker?

Perhaps Steinbrück is angling for a small CDU/CSU turnout – hoping all the SPD voters show up.

Regardless, there is some chance Steinbrück really did change his mind. And if so, the odds just shifted.

How much I do not know.

For now, I am still sticking with "no grand coalition", even though the odds of a "grand coalition" just got better, perhaps on a political bluff.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

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