Hofreiter wants to make flying more expensive ++ Leftists with demands for heat pumps

  • Anton Hofreiter is in favor of making air travel more expensive
  • Volker Wissing believes that airplanes have an advantage over trains
  • The CSU wants to abolish VAT on staple foods
  • SPD General Secretary Kühnert rejects tax proposals from the Union, the left is in favor
  • Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) wants to protect airports and railway infrastructure better – also against climate activists

Berlin. There is no peace in politics. The discussions about the new heating law of the traffic light coalition are not abating: From a domestic point of view, the striving for climate neutrality currently one of the most important topics in Germany. Meanwhile, the CSU wants to abolish VAT on staple foods. SPD General Secretary Kevin Kühnert disagrees.

The most important political news of the day can be found here in the Newsblog.

Political news from July 20th: Wissing: Planes have unbeatable advantages over trains

5.10 p.m.: Federal Transport Minister Volker Wissing (FDP) sees air traffic in comparison with the train unbeatable advantage. Rail transport will always have a harder time compared to airplanes, Wissing told this editorial office. “Anyone who wants to take the train to Spain or Portugal, for example, can quickly be on the road for more than a day and have to change trains several times. The plane has unbeatable advantages there.” Wissing was reacting to a publication by the environmental organization Greenpeace, according to which traveling by train through Europe is often more expensive than the plane.

The transport minister explained that he is working with neighboring European countries to make cross-border rail transport more attractive. “However, this is not trivial: For example, there are different traction current and train protection systems in the individual countries, so that the locomotive has to be replaced every time at the border and the driver at the same time – because of different operating languages ​​and rules. In some countries there is a reservation obligation , in others not.” All of this affects the price. “It is all the more important that we become climate-neutral as quickly as possible when flying,” said Wissing.

Hofreiter wants to make flying more expensive

4:15 p.m.: The Green European politician Anton Hofreiter has spoken out in favor of making air travel more expensive. “It remains a problem that climate-damaging subsidies and the lack of a European kerosene tax continue to distort prices,” Hofreiter told the editorial office. He was reacting to a publication by the environmental organization Greenpeace, according to which the train is often more expensive than the plane when traveling through Europe.

“With the 49-euro ticket, rail travel has already become significantly cheaper in regional trains. Now it’s time to improve long-distance traffic, too,” Hofreiter demanded. “For this, massive investments must be made in the rail infrastructure in order to expand capacities and expand the range of services.”

Greenpeace compared the ticket prices for planes and trains on 112 routes across Europe, each with several booking times. According to the organization, the train is 71 percent more expensive for customers than the more climate-damaging air connections. Of the 31 connections with start or end points in Germany, the train was more expensive in half of the cases.

SPD General Secretary Kühnert rejects tax proposals from the Union

4:04 p.m.: SPD General Secretary Kevin Kuehnert rejects attempts by Union politicians to reduce VAT on food and tax-free additional income opportunities for pensioners. “The Union once claimed that it wanted to pursue a serious budgetary policy. Now, according to the principle of summer sales, any demand for a reduction is thrown around every day without there being any counter-financing,” he told the world on Thursday -TV.

Regarding the proposal by CSU leader Markus Söder to exempt staple foods from VAT, Kühnert said: “The SPD is also in favor of households with small and medium-sized incomes in particular being relieved. But we believe that there are better proposals for this.” In the past, companies have not always passed on VAT reductions to consumers. In addition, this is a “relief proposal with the watering can”, from which people with high incomes would also benefit. The CSU also makes no proposal for financing.

Left for elimination of VAT on staple foods

10:47 a.m.: The Left Party rejected the CSU initiative to abolish the VAT on basic foodstuffs welcomed. He hopes for an initiative after the summer break so that “this could really become a reality,” said parliamentary group leader Dietmar Bartsch on Thursday on RTL and ntv’s “Frühstart” program. However, the Union faction has not yet supported a corresponding motion by his party in the Bundestag.

CSU boss Markus Söder called on Wednesday for the VAT on basic foods, including meat, fish and milk, to be reduced to zero percent. CDU leader Friedrich Merz described the initiative at a closed conference of the CSU state group in Andechs Monastery as a “proposal that is definitely worth considering”. Söder put the cost of the suspension at twelve billion euros.

Applying for child allowance – what parents should know now

10:32 a.m.: The child supplement is intended to provide better support for children from low-income families and to prevent child poverty. However, not all families who are entitled to the money apply for the supplement. Read here which families are entitled to the payment and how parents can apply for it.

Faeser wants to better protect airports and railway infrastructure

10.05 a.m.: Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) has called for better protection of airports and railway systems in the case of so-called critical infrastructure. So it is “unacceptable” at airports that climate activists came relatively easily over fences, she said on Thursday in the ARD “Morgenmagazin”. There must be alternative options on the railways, for example if lines are cut. “That a network A and B will then start up immediately in case of an emergency.”

On Monday was the draft for the so-called Kritis umbrella law, which is intended to create nationwide uniform minimum standards for the protection of critical infrastructure. In December, the federal cabinet adopted key points for this. Numerous areas from energy, drinking water and waste water to transport, banking and digital infrastructure to the health sector and food production are considered critical infrastructure.


Nancy Faser

birth date

July 13, 1970

Star sign


Government office

Federal Minister of the Interior

Political party


party member since


Marital status

Married, one son

Linke demands guarantees for the longevity and repairability of heat pumps

6.15 a.m.: The left accuses the federal government of leaving the population alone with the risks of installing a heat pump. “The federal government is spending a lot of money on the energy transition. And it also expects the population to participate in it,” said the parliamentary secretary of the left in the Bundestag, Jan Korte, this editorial. “It would be the least, within the framework of the funding programs to focus on quality and sustainability and to provide good technical solutions and standards that people can rely on.”

The background is the answer of the Federal Ministry of Economics to a request from the left. Korte wanted to know from the ministry whether the federal government would like “sustainability aspects”. repairability, guaranteed availability of spare parts or long-term manufacturer guarantees as a prerequisite for including certain devices on the list of heat pumps whose installation is subsidized by the state. The Ministry of Economics Minister Robert Habeck (Greens) informed Korte that the aspects mentioned are “currently not included in the listing”. “At the moment, there are no plans to add these criteria,” the answer continues.

“A heat pump is also a big investment with state support,” said Korte. Anyone who joins the approximately 5000 heat pumps installed, which are on the subsidy list of the Federal Office of Economics and Export Control, “should be able to expect a decent device,” says the left-wing politician. However, longevity and repairability played no role in the listing. “If a heat pump only lasts a few years, it’s not just a waste of private investment, but also of public funding. That’s unacceptable.”

The political news of July 19:

  • In the billion dollar scandal surrounding the collapse of the Wirecard Group the suspected mastermind Jan Marsalek now also accuses the prosecutor’s key witness.
  • The CDU MP Thorsten Frei received the backing of party and parliamentary group leader Friedrich Merz for his push to abolish the right of asylum in its existing form.
  • The 22 suspects arrested in December Reich citizen remain in custody.
  • The CSU demands the purchase of the parental allowance from a maximum of 14 to 16 months if both parents take time off.
  • In an open letter to the federal government and warned the Bundestag of the consequences of the controversial heating law.
  • be who parents house is inherited or given as a gift, according to the ideas of the CSU in the Bundestag, no tax should be paid for it in the future.
  • Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck (Greens) hopes for a relaxation in the relationship between the coalition partners after months of conflict.
  • Schleswig-Holstein’s Equal Opportunities Minister Aminata Touré (Greens) has called for the unrestricted recognition of female genital mutilation as a reason for asylum in Germany.
  • You can read all the important political news from July 19 here.

(with dpa/afp/epd/kna/fmg)

Questions about the article? Email us: [email protected]

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