Commentary groko-liebe der fdp: von wegen keine ausschlieberitis

The FDP in Lower Saxony does not want a traffic light with the Greens, but Jamaica is not out of the question. Such a stance seems extremely implausible

A team soon? If it comes to the Groko, then thanks to the FDP. Photo: dpa

The FDP is making a fool of itself. After the state elections in Lower Saxony, the Liberals rule out a traffic light coalition because of the intolerable state Greens, but can imagine a Jamaica alliance. After all, "you can’t refuse everyone by being exclusionary," said FDP Secretary General Gero Hocker the morning after the election. But the Greens would then still be the same. And the FDP would have a credibility problem.

Actually, the party wants to avoid just that. The party leadership remains so steadfast in its refusal because it doesn’t want to look fickle as soon as posts and official cars tempt it. Before the election, the FDP campaigned for the red-green coalition to be voted out.

But the question is why top candidate Stefan Birkner ruled out cooperation with the SPD and the Greens in the first place. It was not strategically wise. Birkner’s party could probably implement even more liberal content in a traffic light than in a Jamaica coalition – and change the policies it criticizes. After all, Minister President Stephan Weil (SPD) is bitterly dependent on the FDP if he wants to prevent the Groko.

The liberals, however, are virtually driving the SPD into the arms of the CDU. Hocker’s justification for this is also adventurous. He initially said that the grand coalition had the larger majority. But that is – if you’ll pardon the expression – always the case and therefore not an argument. Then Hocker added that the country had a right to be well governed.

With a traffic light, however, a stable government over five years is not possible. He also feared that the red-green policy would then simply be continued. But in order to find that out, one would first have to hold substantive talks and not just have a coffee in the state chancellery, as announced.

Certainly, the FDP’s attitude also has something to do with the coalition negotiations in Berlin. There, the party around Christian Lindner is giving itself a general overhaul. The Hanoverians probably have the feeling that they should not strive for a politically opposing coalition – especially if Jamaica were mathematically possible.

But that’s no way to implement liberal policies. And even worse: All the negative effects of a grand coalition will also exist in Lower Saxony – thanks to the FDP.

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