German elections: ‘Kingmaker’ parties back centre-left coalition talks


Ten days after Germany’s centre-left Social Democrats won parliamentary elections, the Greens and pro-business liberals have agreed to start exploratory coalition talks with them. Thursday’s talks with the “kingmakers” mean centre-left leader Olaf Scholz is a step closer to the job of chancellor. It is a blow to the conservatives’ leader Armin Laschet, who presided over their worst ever electoral performance. He has not yet given up: “We are also ready for further talks.” However, the head of his CDU’s sister party in Bavaria, Markus Söder, has described the decision by the Greens and liberal FDP as a “de facto rejection” of a conservative-led government. While the two parties came third and fourth in the election, they are most popular among young voters. Their decision to favour talks with the centre-left SPD followed preliminary discussions with both main parties over recent days.(BBC)…[+]