The Prime Minister announced a few weeks ago Pure Haseloff a press conference on the balance sheet of Germany's first Kenya coalition. The alliance of the CDU, SPD and the Greens had achieved a “top performance in the history of Saxony-Anhalt”. Economic growth, falling unemployment, rising wages.
Haseloff raved about his own government work.
When he was asked by journalists how things were going in the cabinet between people, Haseloff opened his arms and looked around, where ministers from the SPD and the Greens were also sitting.
"Is there anyone here in the Cabinet who hasn't been feeling well?" Asked the Prime Minister. He doesn't see any hand raised. "Everyone felt good," said Haseloff with satisfaction.
"The spread between the conservatives in my CDU and the left in the Greens is wider than ever before within a German government."
The Prime Minister made it easy for himself. In fact, the Kenya coalition, which had ruled the country since 2016, was in an ongoing dispute. Hardly any other alliance made it into the national headlines so often because of quarrels. Every few months at least one of the partners threatened to end prematurely.
In a SPIEGEL interview in November 2019, Haseloff said: "The spread between the conservatives in my CDU and the left in the Greens is wider than ever before within a German government."
Alone: Mathematically, there was no alternative because of the large AfD parliamentary group in the state parliament. The "bulwark against the right" was forced to cooperate, threats to break the coalition were always without consequences, in the end they were taken less and less seriously. These are the biggest debates in five years of Kenya:
1. Study Commission
It was the first provocation for the Greens and the SPD and the first right-turn signal for the CDU parliamentary group in summer 2017. A majority of the Christian Democratic parliamentary group voted in favor of the AfD proposal to set up a commission of inquiry to investigate left-wing extremism.
The then AfD country chief André Poggenburg was happy about the "dam breach" and spoke of the "milestone in the development of the AfD". Haseloff was very embarrassed at the time. Chancellor Angela Merkel felt compelled to take a position at their summer press conference: "That does not correspond to my ideas of 'not working together'."
2. The data protection officer
Because the CDU's frustration with the Greens' Agriculture Minister Claudia Dalbert was growing steadily, attempts were made to get the Greens back with small tips.
This included Personnel Leopold.
The Green secret service expert Nils Leopold stood three times in 2018 in the state parliament for the office of data protection officer. With 48 out of 83 valid votes, he also missed the required majority in the third ballot.
The CDU parliamentary group left its own head of government out in the rain, who had probably assured Leopold a majority by telephone before the third ballot. "We need a little pause now," said the Prime Minister. The Greens gritted their teeth.
3. “Fine cream fish fillet” at the Bauhaus
The first dispute arose in autumn 2018, which was to escalate two years later: The Bauhaus Dessau made use of its house rights and invited the punk band "Feine Sahne Fischfilet", who performed there in a live concert series of the ZDF should occur.
Initially, the AfD heavily criticized the concert and public broadcasting, then the CDU joined in - right up to the government spokesman.
The Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Bauhaus Dessau Foundation is the Head of the State Chancellery, Rainer Robra (CDU). The cancellation sparked a nationwide debate about artistic freedom. The Greens and the SPD sharply criticized the CDU's approach. The AfD celebrated again. The band entered ultimately in Dessau at a different location.
4. The Rainer Wendt case
These personalities made the Kenya coalition difficult to create: When the controversial police functionary Rainer Wendt was supposed to take over the post of State Secretary in the Ministry of the Interior in 2019, the Federal Greens and the Federal SPD ran a storm against this decision by Haseloff and his then Interior Minister Holger Stahlknecht. There was talk of the final end for Kenya.
Did Stahlknecht and Haseloff really find out who they were looking for? Magdeburg wanted to get is still unclear today. Wendt is notorious as a police hardliner. CDU member, but a sharp critic of the refugee policy. Despicators of "cuddle justice" and "fun education", champion for a strong state. "The police must also be able to take action," he wrote in his bestseller "Germany in Danger". And: "Weapons that are supposed to work must also be allowed to hurt."
In any case, the occupation that had already been announced was quickly canceled. Wendt would have had to skip a number of salary levels for the promotion, which would have required a cabinet resolution. As expected, the SPD and the Greens blocked, the CDU was stunned.
Wendt whispered in the BILD newspaper about an alleged "command from the Chancellery". The CDU member Detlef Gürth commented on Haseloff and Stahlknecht's action at the time: “They climb on the crane, make big cheeks to pose. Then they secretly climb back down. Now there are two people with no eggs. Point."
5. The Robert Möritz case
It was the young SPD politician Igor Matviyets who came up at the end of 2019 Twitter an unusual sign was noticed on a photo of a CDU district executive. There was a sword stuck in a cross. The then board member Robert Möritz from the Anhalt-Bitterfeld district was exposed as a member of the ominous group "Uniter", a secret organization of former security forces.
Möritz also expressed himself hostile to Islam on Twitter. The CDU immediately stood behind him, but research was continued: by the "Tagesspiegel", the MDR Television, the regional newspapers and also the SPIEGEL. Ultimately, Möritz revealed a right-wing extremist past, from which he could not credibly distance himself. This also included a tattoo of a so-called »black sun«, a symbol of recognition for the right-wing extremist scene.
The SPD and the Greens put pressure on. The CDU was outraged. "We don't ask the Greens every day whether they are all pedophiles," said CDU MP Frank Scheurell at the time, which also caused outrage. "Everyone deserves a second chance, this applies to the Greens as well as to earlier right-wing radicals," said Scheurell.
There was no second chance, Möritz got entangled in numerous contradictions. When the CDU finally wanted to clear everything up in a crisis meeting, Möritz left the party. "Uniter" became later declared a test case for the protection of the constitution. Matviyets is now entering Halle as a direct candidate for the state parliament
6. The Oury Jalloh case
The Oury Jalloh case has never been fully resolved. Jalloh was found dead with severe burns after a fire in a Dessau police cell in 2005.
In June 2018, the legal committee of the state parliament had the criminal defense attorney and former legal policy spokesman for the Greens in Bundestag, Jerzy Monday, and hired the former Munich Public Prosecutor Manfred Nötzel to examine the files in the Jalloh case and to answer open questions.
In the summer of 2020, however, this educational process came to a standstill. The reason: the CDU-led Justice Ministry refused to hold talks with seven judicial officers.
There is only an obligation to provide information to the Legal Committee. The Greens and the SPD saw this as a hindrance to the education, the legal reasons were merely advanced. Especially since several public prosecutors, who were to be questioned, declined the interview.
It is uncertain whether there will be a committee of inquiry into the case in the coming legislative period. The Kenya coalition also survived this clinch.
7. 86 cents
The final of the Kenya coalition followed at the end of 2020. The coalition argued about raising the license fee by 86 cents. The CDU parliamentary group in Saxony-Anhalt strictly rejected the increase in the radio license fee from EUR 17,50 to EUR 18,36. However, the cabinet - including Haseloff - had agreed to approve the Interstate Broadcasting Treaty.
The CDU still wanted to vote against the treaty in parliament. The problem: The AfD also rejected the increase. If it had come to a vote in the state parliament, Christian Democrats and AfD would have pursued federal politics together and determined politics for Germany with their vote - namely, prevented the increase in the license fee.
If there had been a vote, the SPD and the Greens would have left the government. When the interior minister and regional chief Stahlknecht mused out loud in an interview with the Magdeburger Volksstimme about continuing as a minority government, Haseloff had reached the limit.
Shouldn't a CDU-led minority government for changing majorities also have to rely on the AfD? Would the vote on license fees have been the start for such a collaboration? Stahlknecht recently asserted in Die Zeit that he had been misunderstood.
Haseloff dismissed the minister, who also resigned from the state chairmanship. Finally, a way was found that there would be no vote in parliament. The 86-cent increase was nevertheless prevented - and the Kenya coalition was saved at the last second.