Let’s be honest: who knew, before national reports on the political situation on the Weser shortly before this election Sunday, that the previous and, according to the current state of affairs, probably also future Senate President and Mayor of the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen is called Andreas “Bovi” Bovenschulte ? Even.
Anyone who filled out the Wahl-O-Mat just for fun noticed at the latest when they were asked whether “surface parking” should be allowed or “the tram should be moved from Obernstraße to Martinistraße” that this was actually a local election.
The result of this citizenship election should therefore be perceived with a corresponding shrug of the shoulders in the rest of the republic. The SPD with the incumbent top candidate can continue to govern the smallest federal state. It has been uninterrupted since Wilhelm Kaisen’s election in July 1945. And just as certain Bremen will continue to occupy last place on the domestic German rankings in terms of economy and education. So be it.
Bremen means hangover for the AfD
Three votes in the Bundesrat is not the world, and the fact that the two-city state is the only country in the western part of the Federal Republic in which the Left Party co-governs was of little consequence. Even in most party headquarters, this evening should be ticked off in a timely manner. The SPD has achieved its goal of becoming the strongest force. In the understanding of the comrades, the gap from 2019 has been wiped out. Presumably they are again the head of government; with whom they coalition remains to be seen. The signs are more likely to continue like this.
The CDU talks about the approximately 25 percent as a respectable success. “We can do big cities,” people in the Adenauerhaus pat themselves on their shoulders. In the end, they not only prescribed a strongly green-colored program for the top candidate, Frank Imhoff, who was mainly rural, but also put Wiebke Winter from the Climate Union at his side. A recipe like in Mutti Merkel’s time. The FDP and the left, both of whom have not exactly been spoiled for success in the recent elections in the federal states, have managed to move back in and can take a breather while delivering bad news.
The Greens and the AfD, on the other hand, are likely to have a long-lasting hangover. This is not surprising in each case, but in combination it certainly is. Because normally they depict success and failure like communicating tubes: if things go up for one, then down for the other – and vice versa.
Greens mess it up with Normalos
The Greens, who were noticeably out of favour, initially had no luck with the turnaround in mobility imposed by their transport senator Maike Schaefer, which spoils driving for the people of Bremen who are plagued by traffic jams; Then there was the bad luck – in the form of political setbacks: the cronies in Robert Habeck’s climate ministry weren’t very well received by his own clientele either. Among the “common” people, i.e. the fringe group of working, tax-paying, normal people who raise children and live in small houses, enthusiasm for green has fallen anyway since the prices for energy and shopping have risen. The German would rather decide for himself what he heats with than what gender he is.
The AfD, on the other hand, can at best talk (or drink) the embarrassing election day on the Weser by not standing in the first place. Strictly speaking, it was not the voters who punished her, but the right to vote, she can claim. Of course, the party cannot avoid one insight: it was solely their failure. Point. And that didn’t just begin when two groups of the quarreling AfD state association claimed that they were the “true” board with the right to submit a state list.
The party had made a fool of itself long before: with a faction that disbanded in the legislative period that was now coming to an end through purely tactically motivated resignations and with MPs who wanted to buy a luxurious mobile home at the expense of the taxpayer, only to later have their insolvency to identify the group. “Germany, but normal”?
Citizens in anger can cheer
Now the AfD has gotten the reward for the fact that its federal board of directors dragged on the problem and didn’t have the courage to put the chaos shop under custody long enough before the election. But in the end you thought: what the heck is Bremen, why burn your fingers? After the child fell into the well, one wants to dissolve the national association and found a new one, is to be heard under the hand.
The citizens in anger (BiW), who today for the first time across the country jumped over the five percent hurdle, undoubtedly benefited from the embarrassment in blue. On the one hand, this rewards its founder and chairman Jan Timke, who for a decade and a half was represented almost as a lone fighter in the citizenship and during this time denounced problems and annoyances that others preferred to avoid politically correct.
Bremen’s waves remain gentle
The BiW may be and remain a special feature of Bremen, but their ten percent certainly reveal one thing with nationwide appeal: There is a not inconsiderable potential of voters whose dissatisfaction with the way things are going in this state – be it the eroding internal security, the “ecological transformation” that costs billions or the consequences of migration that are becoming increasingly visible and noticeable in everyday life – are so great that a few rhetorical phrases or cosmetic repairs can no longer appease them; people whom the established parties presumably can no longer reach and win back; People who then, if necessary, make their cross at the ballot box for an alternative for the alternative for Germany.
Otherwise, the waves that the election is making on the Weser will, all in all, remain rather gentle. For the next four years, the rest of Germany will be just as uninterested in Bremen, in “Bovi” Bovenschulte, in “parking on top” and the tram in Martinistrasse as it was before this weekend.
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