German general elections on September 24 are poised to sweep Chancellor Angela Merkel and her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party back into power for a historic fourth term. But that’s where the certainties end. Merkel’s party will likely fall short of an absolute majority, opening the door for intense negotiations over forming the new government.
This situation report explores how coalition talks with the FDP and other potential partners may reverberate in government policy. The impact of these talks goes well beyond the economic sphere, and they could come to frustrate Angela Merkel’s plans to cement her legacy in the European project.
The FDP is a pro-business political party that is often viewed as a natural coalition party for Angela Merkel’s CDU.
The party is currently polling in third place behind the CDU and Martin Schulz’ left-wing Social Democratic Party (SPD). Should these polls be vindicated next week, the FDP will enter parliament and become the first likely coalition target of the CDU.