GroKo, smiles to acrimony and splits

The GroKo talks between the Merkel led CDU/CSU block and Schulz’s SPD ended on Friday with smiles all round. Now a few days later the smiles have given way to acrimony and splits.

Pressure to renegotiate

The SPD’s leadership is under pressure from the left-wing of the party to reject the GroKo deal.

This pressure has caused a split within the SPD leadership. Some have called for renegotiation of parts of the deal.

In response the CDU and CSU have flatly rejected any renegotiation. A leading CSU figure, Alexander Dobrindt, demanded that SPD leader Schulz “…gets the Dwarf rebellion under control”.

Conference vote more uncertain

As it stands the Grand Coalition agreement will probably be approved at the SPD’s 21 January conference, albeit with a rough ride.

However, this outlook is becoming more uncertain. The agreement faces increased risks from rifts between the prospective GroKo partners and internal opposition in the SPD.

Schulz Groko sales tour

Today Schulz begins a Groko sales tour of the federal parties to sell the deal. That could be a tough sell.

Last year’s election results were a humiliation for the SPD. A question members may ask is if the offerings of the GroKo deal are worth the political risks of another grand coalition?

The leadership will likely point to the risks of fighting another election if Merkel refuses to form a minority government. The polls suggest that the SPD would not make any significant advances from its current lowly position.

On Tuesday Schulz will visit the crucial North Rhine-Westphalia federal party in Düsseldorf. This section commands 144 delegates, about a quarter of those who will attend Sunday’s conference.

If Schulz doesn’t convince the North Rhine-Westphalia federal party, the prospects for another grand coalition could be in serious trouble…

Gary Hollands

Geopolitical analyst Tyga FX