Like the random walk of German politics:
German Social Democratic Party Chairman Franz Muentefering said he'll step down next month, after the executive committee rejected his candidate for the party's No. 2 post. He left open his participation in the new national government.
Muentefering, 65, told reporters in Berlin today of his decision after the SPD's executive committee chose Andrea Nahles, 35, for the position of general secretary, over his candidate Kajo Wassserhoevel. (...)
Splits are emerging in the 130 year-old SPD, questioning its cohesion and commitment to an alliance that its leaders are trying to forge with the Christian Democrats led by Angela Merkel. Left-of-center lawmakers including Nahles partly blame the party's record in trying to modernize the economy for ceding votes in the September national elections. (Source)
Party chairman's are politically powerful entities in Germany. Muentefering's decision is a blow to Germany's grand coalition government that isn't even in office yet.
What's next? A leading figure of the conservatives refusing to be part of Angela Merkel's cabinet?
Just in: According to newspaper reports, Edmund Stoiber - Chairman of the Bavarian chapter of the conservatives - apparently weighs his decision to become economics minister under Merkel. Without Muentefering at the helm, so the reports, he fears a left-wing backlash of the Social Democrats - nothing he would be eager to deal with as minister.
Expect more turmoil in German politics in the weeks ahead.
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