SPD divided over consequences of European election defeat

Photo: SPD logo at party conference (archive), via dts news agency

Berlin (dts) – A discussion has broken out in the SPD about the consequences of the European election debacle. "The last few days show that there is no agreement in the party about how things should proceed now," said SPD board member Sebastian Roloff to the "Handelsblatt".

Meanwhile, SPD politician Ralf Stegner described the "craftsmanship and communicative external image" of the traffic light coalition as "miserable". In addition, the ratings of the AfD and the BSW are "dismayingly high", Stegner told the "Handelsblatt". The prospects for the state elections in the fall and the federal election in 2025 are accordingly "modest".

Stegner spoke out against the austerity measures of Federal Finance Minister Christian Lindner (FDP) and called for a "progressive budget" that combines security and social cohesion with investments in the future. The Bundestag member also advised his party not to leave peace or refugee policy to the populists "without a fight". He also called for "our issues" such as work, pensions, rent and health to be addressed "with practical answers and clear communication". "This will help us win back non-voters."

SPD politician Roloff warned his party colleagues not to attract public attention by making increasingly loud demands. "The party must first become clear about what the way forward looks like," said the Bundestag member. "We should therefore sit down together now, both programmatically and strategically, and agree on a common path."