The three coalition parties have been sitting together in the chancellery for the “peace summit” since Sunday. And one thing has long been clear: there is not much left of the self-proclaimed “progress coalition” – no matter what the result of this round may be. It is not only the immense burdens of the “turning point” that turned all the noble plans of the traffic light alliance upside down as a result of the war. What has always been suspected is becoming more and more apparent in the day-to-day political life of the coalition: namely, that the three partners do not really fit together. The FDP’s initial fear that it would be repeatedly pushed onto the defensive in conjunction with the two left-wing parties, the SPD and the Greens, has come true in full. In the three-party coalition, it is almost always 2:1 – at the expense of the Liberals.
FDP leader Christian Lindner has been trying for years to justify his move from the middle-class camp to the left-wing alliance with the promise that the liberals would “prevent the worst” at the traffic lights. But where did this self-description lead? Exactly what has happened is what is currently putting the FDP under so much pressure: It is not perceived positively as “preventing the worst”, but negatively as “blocking the good”.