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Rebuffed on the Rhine

An electoral setback and the euro’s ills give the chancellor new headaches

19.05.2012 · Economist


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Yet the FDP is unlikely to win enough votes to re-elect the current coalition in 2013. A “traffic-light coalition” with the SPD and Greens would also be hard. Although Mr Lindner praises the FDP’s social-liberal tradition, his party and the left-leaning duo disagree on issues ranging from taxes to minimum wages. Such a coalition has never been tried at national level. Werner Weidenfeld of the Centre for Applied Policy Research in Munich argues that the SPD will shape the next government. It could lead a three-party coalition with the FDP or with the ex-communist Left Party. Or it could become a junior partner to Mrs Merkel’s CDU, reconstituting the “grand coalition” that ruled from 2005 to 2009.

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