Repeated regional elections in the German capital Berlin on February 12, 2023.
Berlin – Today, the repeated regional elections in Berlin were clearly won by the opposition conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU). After counting almost all electoral districts, she received 28.2 percent of the vote. Second place is shared between the Greens and the Social Democrats (SPD) of Mayor Franziska Giffeyová. The leader of the conservatives, Kai Wegner, has already announced that he wants to lead the metropolis, but the Greens are not giving up hope either, who have stated that they want to continue the current coalition with the SPD and the post-communist Left.
CDU is the clear winner of today's vote, it won regional elections in the capital for the first time since 1999. In the last elections in September 2021, the conservatives won 18 percent of the vote, now they have improved by ten percentage points. The SPD, which won with 21.4 percent of the vote a year and a half ago, finished second with the Greens with 18.4 percent of the vote.
The social democrats and the liberal Free Democrats (FDP), which with 4.6 percent of the vote remained below the five percent threshold for entering the Berlin Chamber of Deputies, are labeled as losers by the media. By roughly two percentage points compared to 2021, the Left party also lost, which now received 12.2 percent of the vote. Conversely, the right-wing Alternative for Germany (AfD) fared better, winning 9.1 percent of the vote, which is 1.1 percentage points more than in September 2021.
According to Wegner, Berliners gave the conservatives a clear mandate to lead the city. “It is a clear government commitment for the CDU,” Wegner told his supporters. He noted that he is open to coalition negotiations. In the case of the CDU, this means talks with the SPD and the Greens. Conservatives do not want to negotiate with the Left or the AfD, as they consider the Left to be an extreme left-wing party and the AfD an extreme right-wing party.
In an interview with the public television ARD, Bettina Jaraschová, the electoral leader of the Greens, said that she would not oppose talks with the CDU. “But we have already said what we prefer. If we have the opportunity to continue the coalition with the SPD and the Left, preferably under green leadership, we will do it,” she added.
Today's elections were held by order of the Berlin Constitutional Court, according to which the voting in September 2021 was accompanied by such serious irregularities that it was necessary to repeat the elections. The head of Berlin's electoral commission, Stephan Bröchler, said today's vote was without problems. The representatives of the Council of Europe who watched the elections were also satisfied. The delegation of these international observers told the DPA agency that the voting process was very good.