As Minister of the Interior, Nancy Faeser is the ideal person for our country. Because she loves safety more than anything. Her love of security even goes so far that she does not want to take any risks for the position of Prime Minister of Hesse.
Faeser only traveled to the Hesse election campaign with the return ticket issued by Olaf Scholz. One could say positively: the social promise of the SPD finds its fulfillment in it.
Why it’s important: Because this longing for social security – the opponents speak of a security mentality – reduces their chances of voting. Chancellor Scholz – whose SPD is behind the Union nationwide – could use an election success right now.
How things are going now: The election in Hesse is not over yet. But from now on, Nancy Faeser not only has the CDU and the Greens against her, but also the mathematical probability. With just one exception, all federal politicians left as losers as soon as they ran for a regional mandate.
Here are the facts:
Caution, danger of confusion: Franziska Giffey made it from federal politics to the post of Governing Mayor of Berlin. But before that she had resigned as family minister. She started without an office. She took all the risk.
Manuela Schwesig, as family minister in the grand coalition, moved to Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania in 2017 as prime minister. But: After the Mecklenburg Prime Minister Erwin Sellering had vacated the post due to illness, the state parliament elected her as his successor. There was no referendum at the time.
The only exception to the previous rule was made by Germany’s first environment minister, CDU member Walter Wallmann. After the Hessian CDU had won the state elections together with the FDP with him as the top candidate, Wallmann moved to Wiesbaden in April 1987 after less than a year in office as environment minister. There was no doubt about the attachment to the homeland of the former Frankfurt Mayor. The jovial Walter Wallmann – at that time a shooting star in the Kohl cabinet – was the first CDU prime minister in Hesse.
Conclusion: Nancy Faeser did not destroy her chances of winning the election with the return ticket, but worsened it. Only voters in Hesse can answer the decisive question. Is she a female Röttgen or a revenant of Wallmann? The answer will follow shortly after 6:00 p.m. on October 8th.
Gabor Steingart is one of the best-known journalists in the country. He publishes the newsletter The Pioneer Briefing. The podcast of the same name is Germany’s leading daily podcast for politics and business. Since May 2020, Steingart has been working with his editorial staff on the ship “The Pioneer One”. Before founding Media Pioneer, Steingart was, among other things, Chairman of the Management Board of the Handelsblatt Media Group. You can subscribe to his free newsletter here.