The new coalition in Bavaria continues the CSU policy. The free voters get some expensive extras – but the striking innovations read like a reaction to the electoral success of the Greens.
Bavaria stays as it is. Anyone who feared or hoped for anything after the state election will be misled when looking at the coalition agreement between the CSU and the Free Voters (FW). Prime Minister Markus Söder can continue despite election defeat as before, the free voters did not deny him a change of course. If they did not want to, the parties are politically so close that the agreement lasted only three weeks. That was not difficult, but not very brave. And a bit boring.
The 60-page paper is a confirmation of the previous CSU policy with a few expensive extras for the free voters. So Söder retains his family allowance and the free voters get the almost free child care with 100 Euro per kindergartner per month. But it was not about fundamental, but about financial issues. And they are still easier to solve in rich Bavaria than anywhere else.
The CSU wants to appear more ecological – that's overdue
The more striking innovations do not bear the signature of the Free Voters, but read like a reaction to the electoral success of the Greens. The black-and-orange coalition wants to limit land use, take back a controversial change in the Alpine plan and reduce public transport.
The CSU now wants to appear more ecological, that is overdue anyway. Immediately after the election, Söder announced that environmental protection would be the focus of attention. The high popularity of the Greens has made one or the other of the other parties thoughtful.
The CSU will be even more reluctant to give up five cabinet posts, including the Ministry of Culture, which is considered one of the most important ministries. The Munich Michael Piazolo is to take over. The FW ministers will have to fill their offices with power if they do not want to go down in the coalition. In any case, the coalition agreement clearly bears the signature of the CSU.