Green choose Ska Keller and Sven Giegold as top candidates

Green choose Ska Keller and Sven Giegold as top candidates

The Greens have their top candidates for the European elections certainly. A party congress elected the Brandenburg MEP Ska Keller in first place of the candidate list of the German Greens for the election in May 2019. Keller received 88 percent of the votes in the Leipzig Conference Hall. The 36-year-old has been sitting in the Strasbourg parliament since 2009 and has been the leader of the Greens since 2016. Previously, she was the Green Country Director in Brandenburg.

Their application justified the grown up in Guben cellar at the party congress with their origin. "I care about this Europe," she said, reminding her of the GDR, "where in elections it was always clear who the winners would be." She recalled the now-defunct democratic deficiencies in Poland or Hungary, where judges are dismissed and NGOs are hindered in their work. "Today it is Europe that has to stand up for democracy," she said. "We oppose the shift to the right, we protect fundamental rights."

Keller studied Islamic Studies, Turkology and Judaism in Berlin and Istanbul. In the party she belongs to the left wing. It rejected very early about the Ceta trade agreement with Canada, which would accept others in the party, at least with restrictions. As early as 2014, Keller was the European top candidate for the Greens. At the end of November she wants to be on one party convention the European Greens in Berlin again for this position. "For me, the European Parliament is just the most exciting parliament we have," Keller told ZEIT ONLINE in an interview.

The delegates elected Sven Giegold to the second place. With 738 of 745 votes cast, he achieved a result of almost 98 percent. The 48-year-old from North Rhine-Westphalia came in 2009 in European Parliamentone year after joining the party. As an environmental activist in 2000 he was one of the co-founders of the anti-globalization network Attac, which was also one of the critics of the Green Party at the time of the red-green government.

In his application speech, Giegold ("I am a realistic dreamer") decided against Europafeinden and referred to the benefits of the federation of states: Europe It means "freedom, not a fortress", it offers a future – "nationalism means past," said Giegold under applause from the delegates. Europe is strong enough to make a difference in climate protection. "That's why we're going to make this election a climate change." Giegold also said that Germany was one of the biggest beneficiaries of European unification.

The critic of globalization, which only benefits businesses, also pledged to fight against tax evasion in the EU: "He will not give in until the taxes are paid where they are earned." But he also admitted that one had to distinguish "between where one wants to go and what one can achieve in compromises". Compromises are "no betrayal".

Giegold is one of the most committed supporters of the protest against the cutting down of the Hambacher Forsts in NRW, which is to give way to lignite mining. He studied economic policy and development, at German universities and in Birmingham. To date, he has no driver's license, as he says. "I do not know what I need it for," he said on the sidelines of the congress.

Later in the day, the Greens want to occupy the other places on the list: 40 candidates should be nominated. In addition, the 850 party participants discuss and decide on an election program for the European elections. Over many chapters, the draft describes climate protection as a remedy for political problems. Lack of climate protection also endanger jobs and ultimately the public finances, said party leader Annalena Baerbock during the party congress.

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