Germany's victorious Greens A greener future?明天会更绿？
Two state elections have upturned German politics两个州的选举反转德国政局
THE Greens are the “against party”. They are against a flashy rail project in Stuttgart, against nuclear power and, say their critics, against progress and growth. Yet on March 27th the party’s defiance paid off in stunning fashion. German angst over the nuclear disaster in Japan crested just as two south-western states held elections. In Rhineland-Palatinate the Green vote tripled, vaulting the party into government as junior partner of the Social Democratic Party (SPD), which had previously ruled alone. In Baden-Württemberg 58 years of government by the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) came to an end. The Greens will now take control of a state government for the first time.
This almost-unthinkable result is a big blow to Angela Merkel, the chancellor and CDU leader, who has lost the party’s crown jewel. Her pre-election decision to shut down seven nuclear-power plants looked panicky rather than principled, and may have made matters worse for the CDU. The elections were an even bigger setback for her coalition partner, the Free Democrats (FDP).But the SPD also has little to cheer about: its share of the vote was the lowest in half a century in Rhineland-Palatinate and the lowest ever in Baden-Württemberg, where it will become the junior coalition partner. Only the Greens have reason to celebrate.
The party’s offices in Stuttgart, Baden-Württemberg’s capital, look readier for protests and demonstrations than for the assumption of government responsibility. Yellow drums done up to look like nuclear-waste containers are stacked by the door. Bamboo poles for hoisting banners rest against them. Yet the ready-to-rally impression is somewhat misleading. Baden-Württemberg’s Greens are on the party’s “extreme realist” wing, says Dieter Fuchs of the University of Stuttgart.The incoming premier, Winfried Kretschmann, belongs to the Central Committee of German Catholics and to a traditional shooting club. His down-to-earth Swabian manner matches the state’s spirit better than did the conservative pugnacity of Stefan Mappus, the premier he defeated. The export-oriented Mittelstand has nothing to fear, he suggests. “You can be in the black with green ideas,” he said in an interview shortly before the election.