AfD member Joachim Paul has been voted out of office as committee chairman in Rhineland-Palatinate. Nevertheless, he wants to run as state chairman.
Joachim Paul, AfD member of the Rhineland-Palatinate state parliament Photo: Boris Roessler/dpa
It took the Mainz media committee less than 15 minutes on Tuesday – that’s when the deputies had made parliamentary history. Unanimously, all representatives of SPD, CDU, Greens and FDP had voted out their committee chairman, AfD politician Joachim Paul. It was the first ever vote-out of a committee chairman in the Rhineland-Palatinate state parliament. The person concerned had not even appeared.
Joachim Paul, deputy leader of the AfD parliamentary group in the state parliament, has been criticized for months. The taz had reported in May and again in early November that Paul had published an appreciation of the black metal musician Varg Vikernes, a right-wing extremist convicted of murder and incitement of the people, in the NPD-affiliated paper Hier und Jetzt (H&J) under the pseudonym Karl Ludwig Sand. Paul had communicated under the e-mail address "[email protected]," a reference to the Blackshirts of the Italian fascists and the SS.
Because Paul must be attested a "mental proximity to fascism", he is not portable as a representative of a democratic parliament, justified Greens parliamentary group leader Bernhard brown the deselection. For the SPD, executive director Martin Haller stated that Paul had apparently told the untruth before the committee; instead of clearing up the "dimension and seriousness of the accusations," he took refuge in media scolding.
Christian Baldauf, head of the CDU parliamentary group, stated that Paul had remained "vague" for months. Neither had he distanced himself from the article attributed to him, nor had he explained the mail address. Politicians from the SPD, CDU, Greens and FDP called on the AfD parliamentary group to also draw consequences; Paul could not remain a parliamentary group vice chairman.
"Blackshirt" was also on the Babylon forum
The committee chairman who was voted out attacked state parliament president Hendrik Hering (SPD) a little later: With the invitation to the special meeting of the committee had violated his rights as a committee chairman. Only if a chairman "deliberately delays" a meeting is it the president’s turn. However, only 18 hours had passed between the request for the meeting and the invitation by Hering. Paul wants to have the procedure legally examined.
To the reproaches itself there was little new. Paul maintained that he was not the author of the H&J article. He did not comment on the accusation that he had used the term "blackshirt" as his e-mail address. On SWR, Paul’s former doctoral advisor, Ludolf Pelizaeus, had reported that he remembered "blackshirt" in the e-mail address. To this, Paul merely said that the source of the report was a stolen PC.
Whether he will run for the AfD state chair on Saturday? "Now more than ever," says Paul
Apparently to forestall further publications, Paul went on the offensive in the Mainzer Allgemeine Zeitung. They were trying to put him under pressure with alleged revelations about his private life, he complained. In 2011, the owner of the address [email protected] had registered with the "Babylon Forum" of a sauna club and with an Internet site that was not suitable for young people, Paul confessed.
Asked whether he would run for the AfD state chair on Saturday as planned despite everything, he replied, "Now more than ever!"