European Politics General (Canada welcome too, I suppose)

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rederoin:
A news paper just posted what'd it be like if we used a different voting system in the netherlands, but still kept the 150 seats.

A completely pointless exercise. If the system were changed, the same people wouldn't necessarily cast their votes on the same parties they did before. I'd expect a lot more tactical voting and there would be no telling what the results would be in such scenarios. Who the polls/press say are in the lead would become a much bigger factor.

rederoin:
A news paper just posted what'd it be like if we used a different voting system in the netherlands, but still kept the 150 seats.

Although bear in mind with a different electoral system lots of the small parties would not exist because they would not have any meaningful chance of election, so votes would flow to the larger ones and they'd see better representation.

Agema:

RiseOfTheWhiteWolf:
Then you must be blind.

N-o-o...

I think you need to explain precisely how the EU and its constituent members belittled the UK in some abnormal way (there are after all the occasional spats, especially with the French). Because just saying they did doesn't wash.

I think I don't because thats been explained a thousand times over. Just search "brexit" on these very forums and read through one or two threads, I'm sure a bunch of people laid it out already, and I'm sure a bunch of people tried to refute it. Theres really no point in us writing 5 paragraphs on this topic each if we're just repeating whats been said a thousand times.

Agema:
What a fascinating assessment from someone who's just argued that you don't get much good out of people by insulting them. So insulting Eurosceptics is a terrible idea for being so disrespectful, but when a Eurosceptic insults the EU, everyone should put on their nice face and soberly assess their grievances.

So which is it? Is Farage an asshole or not? If he's not, we can agree he did nothing wrong. If he is, the EU should take the higher ground instead of mimicking his behaviour. Also: the EU needs to calm down the Eurosceptics, not the other way round, so they can act in different ways to achieve their goals. What works for one might not work for the other.

I think its fascinating there are still people out there who haven't understood that. Even Merkel seems to have noticed by now. You're lagging behind badly.

Agema:
This is a whole paragraph of nothing. A load of words that string together and make sense, but contain zero useful content.

Stop being intentionally thick. Alternatively, stop trying to provoke a reaction out of someone by being deliberately obnoxious. Theres a term for that...

Agema:
What is the EU supposed to predict? How does it create the law for something that may or may not happen 20 years hence? What it is supposed to do and how it is supposed to do it?

Predict economic, demographic and societal development over the next decades and try to ensure a relatively comfortable survival for both itself and its population.

By predicting economic, etc etc

What do you think its supposed to do? You keep asking question after question but so far, you've brought absolutely nothing to the table yourself. So, lets turn the tables: how do you suggest Europe deals with my paragraph of nothing, be it on EU level, national level, or whatever level you can think of?

Agema:
Most of all, how much of is this even the EU's responsibility? Isn't it the job of national governments to do things like plan their digital infrastructure and strategy? I certainly know my government does. And when was it ever the job the EU to plan shifts from manufacturing to services, because I know my national government oversaw that too. And so on.

Heres a list of EU agencies.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agencies_of_the_European_Union

If you want to know why the EU chose to make it their responsibility, ask the EU. They made it their job, for whatever reason. You don't get to gobble up billions upon billions in funding, introduce legislation for every aspect of civilised life, open up an agency for whatever you can think of and then turn around and say "Oh, thats the job of national governments now!" when things get uncomfortable and difficult.

Agema:
And what way is the EU stopping them "moving freely"?

The theory that decentralisation can equal freedom and autonomy is at least comprehensible. On the other hand, a certain degree of centralisation is also required for organising cooperation etc. Although without some sort of concrete idea of what way the EU restrains innovation, it's quite hard to know how to assess this.
/quote]

I'm not going to waste 3 hours of my time explaining that to you because you're to lazy or disinterested to flick through one of the countless books on EU law. Go and do that and you might still say its not a problem in your eyes - which is fair enough - but you'll know in what ways the EU restrains innovation without me having to write an essay for this thread.

[quote="Agema" post="528.946139.23927999"]What I mean is that few things are more depressing and miserable for a country and its people than significant economic problems. Often, it results in a lot of other things going wrong; and that's why for instance some very objectionable parties gain support and objectionable governments get elected when the economy goes stagnant or declines.

Define "significant economic problems". How significant are we talking here?

veloper:

rederoin:
A news paper just posted what'd it be like if we used a different voting system in the netherlands, but still kept the 150 seats.

A completely pointless exercise. If the system were changed, the same people wouldn't necessarily cast their votes on the same parties they did before. I'd expect a lot more tactical voting and there would be no telling what the results would be in such scenarios. Who the polls/press say are in the lead would become a much bigger factor.

Pointless, yes, but it's still interesting if you ask me.

Also, Valls is a treacherous rat. That is all.

RiseOfTheWhiteWolf:
I think I don't because thats been explained a thousand times over. Just search "brexit" on these very forums and read through one or two threads, I'm sure a bunch of people laid it out already

You're not answering the question. You're just claiming some other thread may or may not explain the matter, which you've not checked and don't actually know whether it does, and yet I should take that as given you're right.

Emperor's new clothes argument.

So which is it?

Er, you're the one who has claimed one thing and then abruptly pulled a logical volte face. So that's your decision, not mine.

Stop being intentionally thick. Alternatively, stop trying to provoke a reaction out of someone by being deliberately obnoxious. Theres a term for that...

Oh boo hoo.

I'm asking you to supply a concrete answer, rather than a nebulous appeal to stuff so vague it's unaswerable. How about specific examples of something that is going or likely to happen, that needs to be done or prepared, that it is the EU's job to deal with, and it is doing nothing about?

Predict economic, demographic and societal development over the next decades and try to ensure a relatively comfortable survival for both itself and its population.

You mean stuff like:

http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php/Population_structure_and_ageing
https://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/policies/european-development-policy/european-consensus-development_en
http://ec.europa.eu/trade/policy/countries-and-regions/development/index_en.htm
http://ec.europa.eu/trade/policy/in-focus/new-trade-strategy/
http://ec.europa.eu/social/main.jsp?catId=750
https://eeas.europa.eu/topics/common-security-and-defence-policy-csdp_en
http://www.europarl.europa.eu/atyourservice/en/displayFtu.html?ftuId=FTU_5.12.3.html

What do you think its supposed to do? You keep asking question after question but so far, you've brought absolutely nothing to the table yourself. So, lets turn the tables: how do you suggest Europe deals with my paragraph of nothing, be it on EU level, national level, or whatever level you can think of?

See the above; demographics, society, trade, economic development, immigration, defence. Statistics are collected, committees and working groups exist to investigate and discuss, strategies exist, strategies are amended, new strategies formulated.

It should be incredibly obvious the EU is looking at this sort of thing. It might not be super high profile stuff - stuff you have to look for to find it rather than making headline news - but no organisation of the sort the EU is could fail to be having these sorts of considerations.

Heres a list of EU agencies.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agencies_of_the_European_Union

If you want to know why the EU chose to make it their responsibility, ask the EU. They made it their job, for whatever reason. You don't get to gobble up billions upon billions in funding...

The EU works on a budget of about E150 billion. The UK government, by comparison, has a budget of over E800 billion. The combined national governmental budgets of the EU are, I would guess, something like E7 trillion. But it really is the case that the vast majority of decisions that affect your and my daily life are made by various levels of national governance. This did come up in the Brexit debate a lot, and it's probably about 90%.

The EU tends to look at issues requiring international co-operation, but that still leaves a huge amount of organisation and planning in the hands of national governments.

I'm not going to waste 3 hours of my time explaining that to you because you're to lazy or disinterested to flick through one of the countless books on EU law.

You mean you're making grandiose claims and bad excuses for why you don't care to back them up again?

Again, what are we talking about in terms of specific examples are we talking about where freedom from Brussels will increase innovation, in particular where the increased innovation is an improvement over the loss of cohesion between EU nations?

For those intrested in the possible coalition.

The following parties don't want to work together,
Parties that don't want to work with the PVV,

-Groenlinks(Greens)
-VVD(party of the current PM)
-Labour(coalition parnter in current government).
-SP(Dem Socialists)
-D66(Centre Liberals)
-CDA(Christian democrats)
-CU(Christian conservatives with center-left economic policies).

Parties that don't want to work with the VVD,

-SP.

VVD + D66 + CDA + Greens or CU are the most realistic options. Any other combo will need 6+ parties. So Rutte III is a question of when, not if, I think.

Wilders is also the first to break an election promise, he says he does now want to work with Rutte.

Sonmi:

veloper:

rederoin:
A news paper just posted what'd it be like if we used a different voting system in the netherlands, but still kept the 150 seats.

A completely pointless exercise. If the system were changed, the same people wouldn't necessarily cast their votes on the same parties they did before. I'd expect a lot more tactical voting and there would be no telling what the results would be in such scenarios. Who the polls/press say are in the lead would become a much bigger factor.

Pointless, yes, but it's still interesting if you ask me.

Also, Valls is a treacherous rat. That is all.

Pretty much ye, but its also why I like our system.

Not many countries can say they have parties for the rights of animals/that promote animal welfare.

Couldn't they also form a minority government, I'm not sure if the Dutch system allow that?

RiseOfTheWhiteWolf:

I think I don't because thats been explained a thousand times over. Just search "brexit" on these very forums and read through one or two threads, I'm sure a bunch of people laid it out already, and I'm sure a bunch of people tried to refute it.

In which case, we'll come away with second-hand accounts from people who have already planted their flags. What value is that? Give an actual instance of an event.

Meiam:
Couldn't they also form a minority government, I'm not sure if the Dutch system allow that?

I might be wrong here but I believe the Dutch system allows for fairly much. A lot is done more out of habit than law. Officially the dicision of who is in the cabinet is made by the king (or queen, but right now the king). But the king is quite aware that if he annoys parliament too much they'll just get rid of him. It is crucial that our monarchs appear politically neutral, so they won't do anything crazy. This leaves the question of where the new cabinet comes from a bit obtuse. Normally it involves a process of negotiation between parties to form a coalition led by prominent politicians in name of the king. This typically takes a couple of months, I think. A minority cabinet or even a cabinet of political outsiders is certainly possible though I don't think it has ever happened before and I wouldn't be sure about the exact procedures to make it happen.

Some people here have argued that a minority government is the best way forward. I think the political establishment right now doesn't want it though and won't consider it as a first or second option.

Any of guys watched TF1's Grand Debat?

Polls supposedly show Macron coming out of it the most convincing candidate, but I thought his whole shtick was empty and void of any bite, he was by far the worst debater last night. Hamon, Fillon, and Le Pen all performed rather well, I'm not expecting much change in their standings in the following days. Melenchon really hammered in all of his points though, he was incredible, I wouldn't be surprised if he overtook Hamon and the PS at the fourth rank in the polls.

Honestly, an interesting and lively debate, though I would have rather had them behave more civilly.

Sonmi:
Any of guys watched TF1's Grand Debat?

Polls supposedly show Macron coming out of it the most convincing candidate, but I thought his whole shtick was empty and void of any bite, he was by far the worst debater last night. Hamon, Fillon, and Le Pen all performed rather well, I'm not expecting much change in their standings in the following days. Melenchon really hammered in all of his points though, he was incredible, I wouldn't be surprised if he overtook Hamon and the PS at the fourth rank in the polls.

Honestly, an interesting and lively debate, though I would have rather had them behave more civilly.

I love how they were all in pentagon, nice change from the line.

Yeah I didn't think Macron did so good, but maybe all he needed to do was to not faceplant and I guess that's what he did. In some way the expectation were probably pretty low for him since its his first time running for office unlike most everyone else. Plus he got most the attack aimed at him since he's #2 and everyone know Le Pen people would follow her trough hell and fire so the only way to get people is to take them from Macron.

Still got 2 left right? Are there any 1 v 1 debate planned too?

Seems the VVD/CDA/D66/GL are going into discussion in 2 days. But I still have no idea whether it'll be the CU or GL as the 4th party.

the 'restzetels'(lit. rest seats) have been handed out(look up the D'hondt method for detials).

+2:
VVD(35)

+1:
PVV(21)
CDA(20)
D66(20)
SP(15)
GL/PvdA(10 or 15)
Party for animals(6)

So now its possible to form a 5 party coalition without the VVD and PVV, but that one is rather unrealistic(a christian-progressive coalition). CDA+D66+SP+GL+PvdA. The CDA is not that interested in this coalition. It was brought forth by the GL and SP.

The one Wilders wants is just plain nuts. VVD(center right) + PVV(far right) + CDA(center right) + FvD(Far right) + SGP(far protestant right) + 50plus(???).
He is allowed too dream, right? Or he expects both the VVD and CDA to break promises this early on.

Meiam:
Couldn't they also form a minority government, I'm not sure if the Dutch system allow that?

Its possible, but Rutte does not want it.

Well shit. It's been done.

Article 50 was officially triggered, Brexit is on the way.

EDIT: Also, Valls support of Macron only further shows that Macron is only a continuation of Hollande's reign. One really has to feel bad for Benoit Hamon. The communists have called for Jadot, Hamon, and Melenchon to meet again to discuss a common candidacy, personally I think it's too late, but a man can hope.

I'm really surprised she didn't delay triggering article 50 to after elections she would have called up since she know labor can't possibly win anything at the moment.

I heard that the parliament will be able to vote for the final deal, but that's rather strange, what happen if they vote against it? My understanding is that UK is out of the EU one way or another in exactly 2 year now.

Meiam:
I'm really surprised she didn't delay triggering article 50 to after elections she would have called up since she know labor can't possibly win anything at the moment.

I heard that the parliament will be able to vote for the final deal, but that's rather strange, what happen if they vote against it? My understanding is that UK is out of the EU one way or another in exactly 2 year now.

My understanding is that if there is no deal in place in two years than the Brits are out and that is that. They are from that moment on just another country without any deals with the EU, possibly some deals with some of its members in as far as that is possible.

I think such an outcome would be disastrous for Britain and the nearby countries in the short term and probably quite bad in the long term as well. It would require sudden much stricter border control, people who could easily travel back and forth suddenly requiring extra paperwork, etc. It would probably be very sudden and chaotic. It would certainly be unpleasant near the Irish border. A lot of trade and production chains would also suddenly have to be rerouted or would just stop.

Given how bad that would be, I would hope there is some sort of minimal deal that can at least be made. I hope things don't turn out that way and I think neither Europe nor Britain will allow such an unnecesary thing to happen.

Pseudonym:
My understanding is that if there is no deal in place in two years than the Brits are out and that is that.

The EU can hold a vote to extend beyond the two-year period if it so desires. Assuming negotiations were going reasonably well, it would probably do so: no point causing unnecessary havoc if it looks like everything will resolve decently at some point.

Of course, how long negotiations might take and what that extension could be is another matter. It might end up plenty more than than two years.

Agema:

Pseudonym:
My understanding is that if there is no deal in place in two years than the Brits are out and that is that.

The EU can hold a vote to extend beyond the two-year period if it so desires. Assuming negotiations were going reasonably well, it would probably do so: no point causing unnecessary havoc if it looks like everything will resolve decently at some point.

Of course, how long negotiations might take and what that extension could be is another matter. It might end up plenty more than than two years.

I mean, Canada took I think 7 years to sign its free trade agreement with the EU and it almost failed at the last second, so if they can really extend it they might be in negotiation for well over a decade... What would happen if there was an election in the middle and the new government didn't support brexit then?

Glad the smaller candidates in the French election could be heard in yesterday's debate. It didn't really impact who my chosen candidate would be, but it was certainly interesting to hear them explain their positions.

It certainly showed that people can be more extreme than either Le Pen or Melenchon, funnily enough.

Meiam:

I mean, Canada took I think 7 years to sign its free trade agreement with the EU and it almost failed at the last second, so if they can really extend it they might be in negotiation for well over a decade... What would happen if there was an election in the middle and the new government didn't support brexit then?

No new government will reject Brexit except under highly unlikely circumstances.

This is because the only credible UK-wide party that might reject Brexit are the Lib Dems. If elected (alone or in coalition with other anti-Brexit parties, chiefly the SNP), given their openly stated opposition to Brexit, they could claim a democratic mandate to at least restage a referendum. However, even if elected the LDs might baulk at the idea of reversing Brexit - in which case I expect they'd negotiate the most minimal changes to the status quo possible: retaining virtually all aspects of EU membership except membership itself.

However, to inject plausibility here, the Lib Dems are currently on ~10%, they'd need 35%+ to get elected, and they majorly pissed off a large chunk of the electorate 2010-2015. So it's not happening, unless somehow Labour and Tories manage to utterly wreck their own credibility (arguably Labour's half-way there).

* * *

Thus the only likely thing that would reverse the UK's decision would be a massive change in public opinion, which is only likely if there were some form of major crisis. Crisis I suppose including the unlikely possibility that it became unavoidably clear Brexit was going to turn out a disaster for the UK.

Agema:

Thus the only likely thing that would reverse the UK's decision would be a massive change in public opinion, which is only likely if there were some form of major crisis. Crisis I suppose including the unlikely possibility that it became unavoidably clear Brexit was going to turn out a disaster for the UK.

Isn't that irrelevant anyway though? We've handed our notice in because we wanted to go out to the disco on a Friday night - I'm not sure they'll give up our job back just because La Discotheque only played crap tunes from the 1950s.

Agema:
This is because the only credible UK-wide party that might reject Brexit are the Lib Dems. If elected (alone or in coalition with other anti-Brexit parties, chiefly the SNP), given their openly stated opposition to Brexit, they could claim a democratic mandate to at least restage a referendum. However, even if elected the LDs might baulk at the idea of reversing Brexit - in which case I expect they'd negotiate the most minimal changes to the status quo possible: retaining virtually all aspects of EU membership except membership itself.

That's if the SNP doesn't turn its whole focus on Indyref2 instead of helping the Lib Dems stave off Brexit.

Considering how deadset Sturgeon is on the idea of independence, that wouldn't surprise me.

EDIT: Also, I really can't see the Lib Dems ever recovering from Clegg's betrayal of his electorate, to be honest.

Sonmi:
EDIT: Also, I really can't see the Lib Dems ever recovering from Clegg's betrayal of his electorate, to be honest.

They are still the fashionable party of choice for a certain type of person, who won't vote Labour because of the working class aesthetics, but isn't quite so morally lacking as to vote Conservative. It's like voting Green Party, but with slightly more chance of your vote actually counting.

Catnip1024:

Sonmi:
EDIT: Also, I really can't see the Lib Dems ever recovering from Clegg's betrayal of his electorate, to be honest.

They are still the fashionable party of choice for a certain type of person, who won't vote Labour because of the working class aesthetics, but isn't quite so morally lacking as to vote Conservative. It's like voting Green Party, but with slightly more chance of your vote actually counting.

I don't know, after Blair's shift of Labour to the right, I see little reason for the Lib Dems to actually exist.

It's essentially a party for people that want Tory economics without the social connotations that come with it. If they're supposed to be the centre, they're a centre that's awfully close to both major parties. (Alright, maybe not anymore since Corbyn took the helm of Labour)

Baffle2:

Isn't that irrelevant anyway though? We've handed our notice in because we wanted to go out to the disco on a Friday night - I'm not sure they'll give up our job back just because La Discotheque only played crap tunes from the 1950s.

No.

Polls on people's hopes and thoughts for what matter in future Britain actually identify that the most important issues are things like jobs, social development, betterment, social and health services, etc.

The trick here being is that although these are considered the most important issues, they made very little difference between the leave and remain camps. By which I mean neither side convincingly won the debate on these issues, as the population split close to 50:50 on whether Leave or Remain would improve them.

By comparison, "taking back control" and "immigration" were lesser impotrance to the electorate - but in the absence of a compelling perceived difference in those more important socio-economic factors, they made the difference.

What this also means is that if it became somehow clear Leave was going deliver significantly decreased quality of life part-way through negotiations, attitudes may shift... quite a lot. It certainly means that people will be very unhappy and angry if turns out to be true after Brexit.

Agema:

Snip

Sorry, what I meant (and I appreciate that I wasn't very clear), is that we've triggered Article 50, so regardless of the fact that everything will be bad and everyone will be even unhappier than they were before, there isn't much we can do about it now anyway, is there? That is, even if there was a reversal in public opinion, we've kind of signed on the dotted line.

Baffle2:

Sorry, what I meant (and I appreciate that I wasn't very clear), is that we've triggered Article 50, so regardless of the fact that everything will be bad and everyone will be even unhappier than they were before, there isn't much we can do about it now anyway, is there? That is, even if there was a reversal in public opinion, we've kind of signed on the dotted line.

Yes and no.

There's no law saying that, once triggered, the process to leave the EU can be stopped. But neither is there is there a law declaring that the process of leaving cannot be stopped, either.

Thus I believe the EU would be free to choose. The UK could put a request in to terminate the EU departure, and the EU would vote on whether to accept or decline the request.

Agema:
Thus I believe the EU would be free to choose. The UK could put a request in to terminate the EU departure, and the EU would vote on whether to accept or decline the request.

And if it requires unanimous approval, it won't happen, because hey, it's the EU...

http://www.lunion.fr/24766/article/2017-04-07/sondage-presidentielle-jean-luc-melenchon-le-troisieme-homme

I can barely contain my excitement.

I'd be lying if I said I didn't jump in glee with I read this shit. The Left might actually have a shot at the election!

EDIT: For you non-French folks, Melenchon just tied Fillon for third at 19% support, and is still going up. If he keeps the rhythm he's had since the first debate, he should be able to make it to the second round!

Catnip1024:
And if it requires unanimous approval, it won't happen, because hey, it's the EU...

You might be surprised.

There are probably no countries - and certainly no major players - that want the UK to leave the EU except the UK itself: for the money it pays in, for its stance on many issues, for helping maintain balance of power, as a place their citizens can go to work, for the economic integration, etc.

Even if some are inclined to want the UK to say goodbye to the EU, they are unlikely to be prepared to rock the boat so severely. It's one thing to be a hold-out on something relatively trivial, another entirely to capsize a policy of huge magnitude.

Agema:
You might be surprised.

There are probably no countries - and certainly no major players - that want the UK to leave the EU except the UK itself: for the money it pays in, for its stance on many issues, for helping maintain balance of power, as a place their citizens can go to work, for the economic integration, etc.

Even if some are inclined to want the UK to say goodbye to the EU, they are unlikely to be prepared to rock the boat so severely. It's one thing to be a hold-out on something relatively trivial, another entirely to capsize a policy of huge magnitude.

I might be surprised, but it is naive of people to go into this sort of thing expecting to be allowed to back out. It encourages the wrong sort of thinking - opponents can just go "let's completely wreck this shit", rather than "what's the best way to deal with this shit". And if it backfires, that's a complete lack of deal and being outside of the EU.

Catnip1024:

I might be surprised, but it is naive of people to go into this sort of thing expecting to be allowed to back out.

I agree that the slightest hint this was a dodgy ploy to wangle concessions would be met with short shrift. Or alternatively, grinding through all the painful and expensive negotiations and deciding to ask to cancel because the deal looked bad would also be viewed very dimly.

But in all sorts of situations where the reversed decision looked more, "honest" I suppose you might say, I suspect it would be reasonably well received.

I don't mean to necropost, but I figured it might be appropriate to resurrect a general rather than create a new thread specifically for the German elections.

So yeah, Germany is in a bit of a pickle.

Coalition talks between Merkel's Christian Democratic Union, their Bavarian associates. the Liberal Party, and the Greens has fallen by the side, the right-wing Jamaica coalition is no more due to a multitude of disagreements between the different coalition members, mostly on the issue of refugees and the environment (the fact that the Freiedemokrats are the ones to pull out instead of the CSU or the Greens is surprising to me though).

Merkel could still technically form a grand coalition with Germany's second party and former coalition partner, the centre-left SPD led by Martin Schultz, but Schultz rejects the prospect of allying with CDU once again, arguing that it lost them support due to moving away from their ideological base and that the lose in voter share for both the SPD and the CDU during the latest elections is indicative of the German people's rejection of the grand coalition. Centrist groups within the SPD argue that Schultz should extend an olive branch to Merkel though, and that he could maybe even potentially ask for the chancellorship instead.

So, what is Germany heading for? A minority government? The return of the grand coalition? Or snap elections?

All in all, Germany seems severely weakened on the European level, a failure to form a government is quite shameful, even if it's not quite on Dutch levels of deadlock.

Sonmi:
I don't mean to necropost, but I figured it might be appropriate to resurrect a general rather than create a new thread specifically for the German elections.

So yeah, Germany is in a bit of a pickle.

Coalition talks between Merkel's Christian Democratic Union, their Bavarian associates. the Liberal Party, and the Greens has fallen by the side, the right-wing Jamaica coalition is no more due to a multitude of disagreements between the different coalition members, mostly on the issue of refugees and the environment (the fact that the Freiedemokrats are the ones to pull out instead of the CSU or the Greens is surprising to me though).

Merkel could still technically form a grand coalition with Germany's second party and former coalition partner, the centre-left SPD led by Martin Schultz, but Schultz rejects the prospect of allying with CDU once again, arguing that it lost them support due to moving away from their ideological base and that the lose in voter share for both the SPD and the CDU during the latest elections is indicative of the German people's rejection of the grand coalition. Centrist groups within the SPD argue that Schultz should extend an olive branch to Merkel though, and that he could maybe even potentially ask for the chancellorship instead.

So, what is Germany heading for? A minority government? The return of the grand coalition? Or snap elections?

All in all, Germany seems severely weakened on the European level, a failure to form a government is quite shameful, even if it's not quite on Dutch levels of deadlock.

Ooh, a new topic.

I don't know the ins and outs of German party politics, but I would quite like to see someone else have an opportunity to have a go at the chancellorship. One person holding onto it for 16 years wouldn't quite send out the right message about democracy, imho. And Merkel is starting to pick up baggage, which helps nobody.

Catnip1024:
I don't know the ins and outs of German party politics, but I would quite like to see someone else have an opportunity to have a go at the chancellorship. One person holding onto it for 16 years wouldn't quite send out the right message about democracy, imho. And Merkel is starting to pick up baggage, which helps nobody.

The only chance of that happening is if a minority government is rejected and the CDU (Merkels party) does everything to get another coalition with the SPD. In that case the SPD could demand the chancellorship and install Schulz.

...Which I really can't see happening because Merkel herself won't allow it. Unlikely she'll step down judging by the way she's clung to her position in recent years, unlikely the CDU will kick her out (if there was any chance of that happening it would have during the refugee crisis). Plus, that would make the AfD leader of the opposition and every other party will cut their right hand off with their left if it means stopping the AfD from gaining influence.

Jamaika is dead, theres no way the FDP and their leader Lindner will agree to a coalition now or after snap elections, the results of which would likely be very simular to now. So a minority government (now or after reelections) is very, very likely.

I'm almost glad the cracks are starting to show tbqhwy.

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/nov/17/irish-pm-brexit-backing-politicians-did-not-think-things-through
https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/brexit/brexit-republic-of-ireland-will-stand-fast-on-matching-customs-rules-36345334.html
https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/politics/boris-johnson-visits-simon-coveney-in-dublin-and-theyre-already-disagreeing-in-early-morning-press-conference-36328625.html

You just can't make this shit up, after all this time we still have no more an idea on the border (where's the clock now? 2 years? since we brought it up?), the NI executive hasn't been reestablished, and the Tories are playing fast and loose with the peace agreements while showing utter contempt for the stability of Ireland.

And if you think Varadkar or Coveney are biased, bear in mind Fine Gael is for all intents and purposes the Irish Tory party, if you cant get consensus with them you're fucked everywhere else outside of the Loyalists.

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