Now it’s getting serious: In more than 20 working groups, around 300 politicians from the SPD, Greens and FDP are negotiating a traffic light coalition agreement in Berlin.
Familiar faces from Baden-Württemberg sit at the table – but also new hopes. A heavyweight may have to bury the hope of a ministerial post.
From A for work to V for diversity: In 22 working groups, the SPD, Greens and FDP are now trying to clarify all the important issues for a coalition agreement by November 10th. Baden-Württemberg is also broadly represented in the various groups.
Prominent places for Esken and Stoch
Probably the most prominent face of the Baden-Württemberg SPD in these coalition negotiations is Saskia Esken: Not only a member of the Bundestag from the Calw / Freudenstadt constituency, but also the federal co-chair of her party. As such, it belongs to the so-called main negotiating group, which later wants to mediate in the event of disagreements in the working groups.
The SPD state and parliamentary group leader Andreas Stoch will also negotiate for his party. The former state minister of culture heads the working group “Education and Opportunities for All”. After the state elections in Baden-Württemberg, Stoch was one of the supporters of a traffic light coalition, but this failed because of Prime Minister Winfried Kretschmann (Greens). Now Stoch can help ensure that the traffic lights in the Bund may work out.
Queer community: excitement about Leni Breymaier
In the run-up to the talks, there was a stir that the Aalen SPD member of the Bundestag Leni Breymaier was initially supposed to take over the chairmanship of the group for equality and diversity. Outraged criticism came from the community of lesbians, gays, bisexuals, inter- and transsexuals because Breymaier recently spoke out against a self-determination law for trans, inter- and non-binary people. However, Petra Köpping now takes over the management of the group, but Breymaier is still there.
Double role for FDP country chief Michael Theurer
For the Baden-Württemberg FDP, it comes as no surprise that the state chairman Michael Theurer from Horb am Neckar (Freudenstadt district) Place at the traffic light negotiating table. He heads the working group, which deals with future economic policy, and is also involved in negotiating the topics of climate and energy.
The Stuttgart FDP MP and State Secretary General Judith Skudelny has a say in the subject of environmental and nature conservation – she was previously the environmental policy spokeswoman for the FDP parliamentary group. As such, she argued that environmental protection and business should not be played off against each other. She could help to build important bridges between the FDP and the Greens in these traffic light talks.
Greens send several “newcomers”
The most exciting negotiating group from Baden-Württemberg, however, offer the Greens, because they send several hopefuls into the race. The new state finance minister Danyal Bayaz, for example, sits in the working group “Finances and Budget”. The 37-year-old stands for the rejuvenation of his party and has not only been traded for higher tasks since he moved to Winfried Kretschmann’s cabinet.
With the 27-year-old Ricarda Lang, another face of the future of the Greens is sitting at the negotiating table. Born in Filderstadt, she has been Deputy Federal Chairwoman since November 2019 and the first openly bisexual politician in the Bundestag. Accordingly, she heads the working group for equality and diversity for the Greens. In a tweet she wrote: “It is time for a government that does justice to the reality of our diverse society”.
In addition to Danyal Bayaz and Ricarda Lang, Franziska Brantner, MP from Heidelberg, and Chris Kühn from Tübingen, two other, younger Greens from Baden-Württemberg are at the traffic light negotiations. Brantner heads the working group “Europe”, Kühn the group “Building and Living”. Among other things, it has to clarify how a traffic light coalition wants to achieve the promised construction of 400,000 new apartments per year. The deputy chairman of the Greens parliamentary group, Agnieszka Brugger from Ravensburg, is also part of the working group for foreign and security policy.
What will become of Cem Özdemir?
In addition to Baden-Württemberg’s Minister of Culture Theresa Schopper and Minister of Science Theresia Bauer, there is another prominent name on the list of green negotiators: Cem Özdemir will head the “Economy” group – a little surprise. Because Özdemir had recently taken a strong position on the subject of traffic and also headed the relevant committee in the Bundestag. It has already been speculated whether he has hopes for the office of transport minister – Özdemir had repeatedly criticized Andreas Scheuer (CSU).
But the relevant working group is now headed by another Green transport expert: parliamentary group leader Anton Hofreiter, who should also have a good chance of finding the relevant ministry. For Özdemir there is probably no place in the cabinet: If the Greens get four ministries, for example, the federal chairman Annalena Baerbock and the federal chairman Robert Habeck are seated. If Hofreiter were to become transport minister, the Greens would have to fill the fourth ministerial post equally with another woman. Özdemir could replace Hofreiter at the top of the parliamentary group – or still squint at the successor to Winfried Kretschmann in Baden-Württemberg.