Germany's Merkel closer to breaking impasse over new government

Merkel strikes preliminary deal to hold power in German coalition

Negotiations to form a new German government cleared a key hurdle early Friday after the leaders of Angela Merkel's conservative bloc and the Social Democrats reached a preliminary agreement to pursue formal coalition talks.

French President Emmanuel Macron said Friday he was "happy and very satisfied" that German Chancellor Angela Merkel had achieved a breakthrough with the Social Democrats on her bid to form a coalition.

Merkel and the SPD also agreed to limit family reunions for refugees to 1,000 a month, clearing a major stumbling block to coalition talks between the two political groups after the number of migrants entering Germany contributed to a slump the chancellor's support in the September election. They blame having been in a coalition with Merkel for the party's bad results in the September elections, and directly after the elections Schulz had ruled out a renewal. Therefore, Europe needs a new departure, and she was optimistic that things were moving ahead.

Many SPD members remain sceptical about renewing the coalition.

On Europe, the agreement aims to kickstart the Franco-German tandem driving European Union policies and integration by welcoming France's president Emmanuel Macron's reform ideas.

Even if negotiators find a deal, it can still be torpedoed when SPD delegates and later rank-and-file members get to vote on whether the traditional labour party should once again govern in Merkel s shadow.

The deal "smells strongly of a continuation of the governing style we know from the last grand coalition, which didn't do much good for society or for the SPD", he said. Politicians of the Green Party admitted that they also considered bailing on the talks over the chancellor's attitude.


They were her second choice - after similar negotiations with a separate pro-business party - but it appears circumstances have forced her hand: Party leaders, both for the SDP and the center-right alliance fronted by Merkel, have given themselves until Thursday to determine whether a framework agreement is possible.

Le Maire sought to play down fears of a drastic EU overhaul, saying some of Macron's more controversial plans would be discussed in due time, with tax harmonisation and a banking union first on the agenda.

"I am very satisfied with the content", Juncker told a press conference in Bulgaria on Friday, describing the deal's section on the future of the European Union as a "very significant, positive, constructive, forward-looking, purposeful contribution".

Should none of these options pan out, the German president, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, will be forced to call new elections, something no one wants with the current slate of leaders - at best, the results will be the same.

The political relationship between the United States and Germany has already "changed dramatically" since President Donald Trump came into office, said Anderson.

"This is uncharted waters for the German system, although I would never go so far as to way that it's the top of a slippery slope to total chaos and breakdown", said Jeffrey Anderson, director of the BMW Center for German and European Studies in the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service and Professor of Government at Georgetown University. Formal coalition negotiations are to follow.

Party officials believe a new government is unlikely to take the reins of power until possibly April.

Related news:

Hot News

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Yemen's Houthis say they fired ballistic missile at Saudi
Jan 13, 2018 - 05:28
On Dec. 19, 2017, the Houthi movement fired a ballistic missile toward the royal palace in the Saudi capital of Riyadh. The war has killed more than 10,000 people and displaced more than 3 million.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top India beat Pakistan in Blind Cricket World Cup Match
Jan 13, 2018 - 05:27
Meanwhile, Pakistan Blind Cricket Team manager Zeeshan Abbasi has said that they are ready to face India . The win places India at the top of their table while the hosts closely follow them on the second spot.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Leonardo DiCaprio to star in new Quentin Tarantino movie about Charles Manson
Jan 13, 2018 - 05:26
The movie will be Leonardo's first movie since his role in The Revenant which won him his first Academy Award. Additionally, the release of the film will come out on the 50th anniversary of Sharon Tate's murder.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Suspect in fatal Call of Duty 'swatting' incident charged with manslaughter
Jan 13, 2018 - 05:21
Barriss is wanted in Kansas for placing a " swatting " call that led to the deadly shooting of 28-year-old Andrew Finch. He was charged with involuntary manslaughter , giving false alarm and interference with a law enforcement officer.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top China warns of United States protectionism after Huawei setback
Jan 13, 2018 - 05:19
Huawei eventually established a United Kingdom office, overseen by the government, to investigate its own kit for security flaws. The Chinese telecommunications firm has been suspected of working closely with the country's government in the past past.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Huge boost for Man City ahead of Watford clash
Jan 13, 2018 - 05:17
Pep Guardiolas ability to improve players will go down as the Spanish managers “legacy” says Shaun Goater. He said: "He's free to stay or leave, it depends".

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Death Toll From Flu Season Jumps in California
Jan 13, 2018 - 05:16
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's influenza division, said during a media briefing Friday. It usually doesn't start until mid-January, but this year, we started seeing cases around November.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Mourinho, Conte Said to Be Candidates to Replace Emery at PSG
Jan 13, 2018 - 05:14
Gone are the type of rants that have been seen at Chelsea this season as Allegri has taken an altogether more rational approach. This awoke something in Antonio Conte , and the club wasted no time in looking for another forward to add to their squad.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top United States inflation jumps, boosting likelihood of rate hike
Jan 13, 2018 - 05:09
Households also paid more for new motor vehicles, which rose 0.6 per cent in price last month, the biggest gain since January. But clothing prices fell for the fourth consecutive month, and airline fares fell 0.5% after a 2.4% drop in November.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Germany is heading towards another GroKo after coalition talks reach breakthrough
Jan 13, 2018 - 05:06
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said he was "very satisfied" with the content of the deal. Manage and limit migration to Germany and Europe to prevent a re-run of the 2015 refugee influx.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Cory Gardner meets with Jeff Sessions to discuss federal enforcement for marijuana
Jan 13, 2018 - 05:06
Attorney General Jeff Sessions at the opening session of the Global Forum on Asset Recovery in Washington, D.C., on December 4. Citing a 2016 report, he criticized Washington state for failing to merge our medical and retail marijuana systems.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Nicole Kidman is glowing in pink as she wins Critics' Choice Award
Jan 12, 2018 - 15:10
The 27-year-old actress is nominated for Best Actress in a Comedy Series for her work on the new Amazon series The Marvelous Mrs. On Sunday, they attended Golden Globes afterparties together where Cuoco wore a black dress with similar sheer elements.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Tonya Harding's estranged mother disputes I, Tonya portrayal
Jan 12, 2018 - 15:08
She said she also didn't watch the Golden Globes , because she was in San Jose for the USA national figure skating championships. June 30, 1994: Harding is stripped of her 1994 national figure skating title and banned for life from the U.S.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Search goes on for Calif. mudslide victims; death toll at 17
Jan 12, 2018 - 15:07
The flow was so powerful it swept several homes off their foundations, crushed others and wrapped cars around trees. Heavy rains pre-dawn on Tuesday had sent rivers of mud tumbling down hillsides destroying 100 homes and killing 17.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Nintendo Direct Mini Unveils a Bunch of Upcoming Switch Games
Jan 12, 2018 - 15:06
And Nintendo Switch owners could be in for another big surprise, as the company files a trademark for a classic gaming series. In a nice touch, playing with friends will give players access to all new powered up attacks called Friend Abilities.