Election Reveals Brexit- and Trump-Like Cleavages in Germany
Germany’s federal election revealed many of the same cleavages we have seen in America, Britain and France, Alexander Roth and Guntram B. Wolff report for the Bruegel think tank:
Urban-rural split: Support for the far-right Alternative for Germany party was low in the cities but high in the countryside.
Old versus young: Districts with a higher share of elderly voters were more supportive of the Alternative.
Education: There is a strong correlation here. The better educated Germans are, the less likely they were to vote for the Alternative.
Income: Higher disposable household income is associated with lower support for the Alternative, however, areas with high unemployment were also less likely to vote for the far right. Read more
German Election Shows Stabilizing Effect of Multiparty Democracy
The headline-grapping news from Germany this weekend was the return of the far right, which won back seats in the national parliament for the first time since 1961.
But the bigger — and more reassuring — story of the election was the fragmentation of the German political landscape.
The Christian Democrats and Social Democrats, once faraway the two largest parties, won only 56 percent of the seats combined. A record seven parties (counting the Bavarian Christian Social Union separately) crossed the 5-percent election threshold. Four parties will probably be needed to form a coalition government — another first in postwar German history.
This might look like instability at first, but it actually underscores the resilience of multiparty democracy. Read more
Germany’s Social Democrats Should Have Picked Side
Germany’s Social Democrats are going the way of the Dutch Labor Party.
Both parties tried to appeal to their working- and middle-class constituents in elections this year and both lost precisely because of this indecision.
Campaigning on liberal immigration laws, social justice and international engagement alienates blue-collar voters.
Campaigning on border controls and deemphasizing identity politics turns away college graduates.
Do both at the same time and you end up with with no supporters at all. Read more
Americans Largely Uninterested in German Election
In America, the German election is mostly being ignored.
Our media today are tightly focused on the ongoing controversy regarding President Donald Trump, NFL players, free speech and the national anthem.
In previous weeks, the endless health-care saga and unusually hasty hurricane season stole the headlines.
These issues are dramatic and tangible to Americans. The German election is viewed more as procedural than exciting or impactful. Read more
“Jamaica” Coalition Looks Like Only Option in Germany
A three-party coalition of Christian Democrats, Free Democrats and Greens looks like the only possibility short of minority government in Germany.
Such a combination, unprecedented at the federal level, is nicknamed “Jamaica” because the parties’ colors are black, yellow and green. Read more
Merkel Wins Reelection in Germany But Will Need More Parties to Govern
Germany could see a three-party “Jamaica” coalition after its election on Sunday.
Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats lost support but are still the largest party.
The Social Democrats suffered an historic defeat and have ruled out continuing the left-right “grand coalition”. Read more
Our German Election Day Live Blog and Reading List
On Sunday, the Atlantic Sentinel will be providing live analysis and commentary of the election in Germany.
Our focus will be on opinion. We won’t be competing with big-name outlets to bring you the latest news, although we will of course report the most important results.
We’ll be reading German, European and international coverage of the election and share (and where necessary translate) interesting takes. And we’ll have our own team of contributors to give you their perspective.
I hope you’ll join us! We’ll kick off around 3 in the afternoon Central European Time. Read more