There is bitter struggle over the seating arrangements in the new Bundestag. The Liberals and the CDU / CSU are at odds. Another faction plays a role in this.
Munich / Berlin – It’s a little like at school, without a pencil case and satchel, but with a similar amount of gossip and brawl. In Berlin, two parliamentary groups are arguing about who has to sit next to the class bully – the AfD * – by 2025.
On the one hand, there is the FDP *, which believes that four years of neighbors with the right-wing party are really enough. On the other side is the Union, which has so far taken its place in the middle and sees no reason to swap with the liberals *.
Bundestag: Dispute over seating arrangements – FDP wants to sit there as the “party of the center”
It’s as tricky as it is serious. Because in the end it is about more than a liberal wrinkling of the nose. In addition to the question of the neighbor, the political location also plays a role. “We see ourselves as a liberal party in the middle,” said Bavaria’s FDP leader, member of the Bundestag * Daniel Föst. “It is therefore logical that we should also sit there.”
The battle for the middle in plenary is not new. When the AfD first came to the Bundestag * in 2017 and the FDP moved in again after four APO years, the question arose once. At the time, the FDP offered fierce resistance *, and its wish not to sit next to the AfD was even said to have been the subject of the ultimately failed Jamaica * negotiations. But the Union did not allow itself to be talked about. The core argument: the liberals have always sat to the right of the CDU * and CSU *.
Bundestag: CDU / CSU see no reason for changing seating arrangements – FDP laments AfD “rabble”
That is how the Union sees it to this day. There is no conclusive reason to change the seating arrangement, said the Parliamentary Executive Director of the Union, Stefan Müller, on Tuesday (October 19). After all, the seating arrangement is “not a carousel that should be turned around at will”. The Liberals, however, have already requested the new seating arrangement and hope that they will be successful this time.
“For four years we have had to endure the rabble and the underground chatter of the AfD,” said Föst. Especially female MPs should regularly listen to bad taste. In everyday parliamentary life this has led to an interesting effect: “Our ranks are always filled from the left, where the Union sits, to the right, where the AfD is,” said Föst. “If you are not fast enough, you have lost.”
The fact that the seating arrangement also reflects the political point of view goes back to the first parliaments after the French Revolution. From 1814, a distinction between right and left emerged in the Chamber of Deputies, with the nobility, moved by the spirit of preservation, sitting on the right of the President and the third estate on the left that wanted to change things. The order in the Bundestag is based on this. So far, seen from the lectern, there are: Left Party * on the far left, then the SPD *, Greens *, Union, FDP and – on the far right – the AfD.
Bundestag: Changed seating arrangements possible – if the traffic lights hold together
So will the Union and the Liberals swap places soon? That is quite possible. If there is no amicable solution to what it looks like, the council of elders will decide the matter. It reflects the majority in parliament.
If the SPD and the Greens support their Ampel * partners, the Union would have to move. Föst calls it “sensible that government partners sit next to each other”. Either way: one day, all the parliamentary groups will still take their seats in their old seats, at least. When the new Bundestag meets on Tuesday (October 26) for the first time after the 2021 * federal election, the old seating arrangements apply. (mmä) * Merkur.de is an offer from IPPEN.MEDIA
List of rubric lists: © Monika Skolimowska / dpa
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