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Snitz explains why the Greens getting voted out of Germany

Germany is in a shitload of trouble. Like China, they're living through a demographic nightmare. To few younger folks to do the work, a declining population, expanding geriatric cohort that will be expensive and not contribute to GDP.

Plus, here's the best part. The nation's reliance on green energy for the past decade has caused energy prices to hit the roof during Putin's dalliance in the Ukraine. How bad is this problem? At the end of 2022, the cost of natural gas in Deutschland was 9 times higher than in the US. Imagine the impact on Gemany's manufacturing base.

The Fall of Germany’s Greens

European voters are souring on the costs of net-zero climate policies.

By The Editorial Board, WSJ

June 10, 2024 5:38 pm ET

If the big story of this weekend’s European Parliament elections is that voters are drifting right, one question is why they’re drifting from parties of the left. In Germany it’s more like a stampede as that country’s Green Party emerged as the biggest loser.

The Greens, one of three parties in Berlin’s governing coalition, won 11.9% of the vote for Germany’s 96 seats in the EU Parliament, compared to a combined 30% for the center-right Christian Democratic Union and Christian Social Union (CDU/CSU) which are in opposition in Berlin. This is down from the Greens’ 20.5% share in the 2019 European Parliament elections and the 15% the party took in national elections in 2021.

Turnout was higher this year than in 2019, so that steep drop in vote share means the Greens lost an enormous number of voters. Their tally this weekend was nearly three million shy of their count in 2019. Their support among voters under age 30 has all but collapsed, to a 12% share, down 19 percentage points from 2019, according to exit polls.

Part of this is German fatigue with the national coalition government led by Olaf Scholz of the Social Democratic Party (SPD). The SPD’s vote share fell nearly two percentage points to 13.9%, and the party tallied some 370,000 fewer votes than in 2019. Of the three governing parties only the Free Democrats (FDP) improved their absolute vote count, although not enough to stave off a small decline in their vote share given higher turnout.

The larger explanation for the Green Party flop is flagging voter interest in climate change—and exasperation with the costs of Green policies. Five years ago, climate ranked among the top voter concerns. A pandemic, European war, energy-price crisis and inflation wave later, not so much. Security policy and immigration now top the list of voter priorities.

Voters have noticed that the Green promise of affordable renewable energy is as distant as ever. Crucial German industries such as autos and chemicals are struggling under sky-high energy prices and anti-carbon regulations. This election also is a sign that many voters may share the frustrations of farmers who took to the streets last winter to protest climate-based tax increases on cars and fuel.

This marks a stunning reversal for Robert Habeck and Annalena Baerbock, the most senior Green politicians in Mr. Scholz’s administration. Mr. Habeck is minister for the economy and climate protection and Ms. Baerbock is foreign minister, and for a time they were the most popular politicians in Germany.

The consequences of this election shock may extend beyond Germany. Voters across Europe this weekend turned to parties that are disinclined to sacrifice economic security today for the speculative future benefit from costly net-zero climate policies. That this happened in the European Union’s largest country is a warning to Brussels to back off its own green agenda. America’s Democrats may also want to pay attention.

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