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Tuesday 14, February

Berlin election: What are the likely coalitions?

Red-Green-Red, the "big coalition", Black-Green or Kenya? The election is over, so now its time for Berlin politicians to work out the new governing coalition. But which is most likely?

Who will get control of Berlin’s city hall? Photo: IMAGO / Dirk Sattler

Tuesday 14, February

On Tuesday, there were 745 new Covid-19 infections reported in Berlin. The seven-day incidence currently stands at 66.6 cases per 100,000 people.

As the dust settles on the Berlin election: what are the likely coalitions?

The good news is, they managed it. With no real reports of irregularities in Sunday’s election in Berlin, the city has made its choice. But it’s still uncertain exactly what the next government will look like. So, what are the options?

CDU + Greens (Black-Green)

Photo: IMAGO / Mike Schmidt

The CDU and its candidate Kai Wegner appear to be the clear winners of the election re-do. With 28.2 percent, it’s up to them to arrange a coalition. So why not partner with the Green Party? After all, a Black-Green alliance is in place elsewhere in Germany. The only problem here is that the Berlin Greens are considered more left than elsewhere in the country and the two parties disagree on many key issues. After some initial doubts, Green candidate Bettina Jarasch is now in favour of implementing the expropriation referendum, doesn’t want to extend the A100 autobahn and is working towards having less cars in the city. The CDU disagrees on all of that. So perhaps this one isn’t too likely after all.

CDU + SPD (The big coalition)

Photo: IMAGO / Bernd Elmenthaler

A more likely partnership? The current Berlin Mayor Franziska Giffey was badly weakened by Sunday’s vote and these parties are more aligned when it comes to key issues. What’s more, ever since the outrage over fireworks on New Year’s Eve, the SPD has been tackling “internal security” in the city as one of its main priorities. However, there are younger, more left-wing elements in the party who might find this alliance difficult.

SPD + Greens + Die Linke (Red-Green-Red)

Imago: IMAGO / Emmanuele Contini

With 54 percent, the already-governing coalition still commands a majority and could continue to rule as before. Before the election, this was the preference of all the parties and it’s believed that Die Linke and the Greens would like this to continue. However, voices from within the SPD hint that they’re interpreting the election results as a mandate for change. “You wish for something different” Giffey said after the election. But perhaps the chance to lead this more left-wing coalition will prove too tempting.

CDU + Greens + SPD (Kenya coalition)

Photo: Imago/FuturexImage

This final coalition is perhaps the least likely. It would give a two-thirds majority to the government (allowing serious constitutional amendments) but it’s not been publicly considered by any party so far. Then again, anything’s possible.