Next month, Germany will elect a new Bundestag. I have written an article on possible coalitions a few weeks ago (click). Today let's look at what is happening in the electoral campaigns.
Merkel visited Dachau yesterday. Of course, she also visited the concentration camp memorial. It makes her the first chancellor to do so while in power. The SPD and the Greens are complaining that she was doing so as part of the electoral campaign. Currently, there is a smaller version of the Oktoberfest happening in the town and she held a speech in a beer tent there. Hannelore Kraft, who would have been a far better chancellor candidate for the SPD, will do exactly the same drill next month. Of course, in both cases, the politician is first booked for the speech and then the party tries to find something to do for them; and of course the concentration camp is a must. The only complaint that I have is that there were more journalists than guests present. It would have been better to just have a picture outside of the memorial site; and make the actual visit private.
Schäuble, also yesterday, said that Greece will need additional help next year. (Well, thanks Captain Obvious). It sounded a bit like a hair cut light, aka. reducing the interest payments while increasing the duration of the credit, but an actual hair cut would be preferable in my opinion.
The SPD is just desperate. First Chancellor candidate Steinbrück ruled out a grand coalition (with Merkel's Christian democrats) now some in the party a for it. First the plan was to increase taxes now it seems to be to lower it. Schröder, the former chancellor responsible for the party moving away from its core believes, is also back. You just know that a electoral campaign is going really well, when you get booed by your own potential voters.
The biggest upset during the campaign of the Greens was that they wanted to introduce a "Veggie-day" at state canteens. Bild reported on that with months of delay. Fascism! (*snark*)
The NSA eavesdropping does not play a big role in the electoral campaign because the SPD was just as much involved in selling out Germans as was the CDU/CSU. They tried, got exposed by the government, and stopped. Not even the Pirates seem to be profiting, they remain at 3 percent in the polls. The hurdle is 5 percent.
This can be considered the most boring campaign ever. Really, everything points towards either a grand coalition of CDU/CSU/SPD, or the current coalition remaining in power for four more years. Merkel and Schäuble are by far the most liked politicians. The SPD does not even seem to believe they still have a chance; and they actually don't because Steinbrück is not a good candidate.