With so much of this year’s US presidential campaign centering around claims of Russia n “puppets,” and France expressing concern about Russia’s potential involvement in their spring vote, Germany is trying to outdo everybody, expressing “alarm” that Russia might conceivably interfere in a future election for which a date hasn’t even been set.
Germany is going to have a federal election at some point in late 2017, though they haven’t decided exactly when. Early polling has shown the ruling Christian Democrats still solidly ahead, but losing a bit of their majority as the Eurosceptic party Alternative fur Deutschland (AfD) is polling considerably higher than in 2013.
If the current polls hold true, the same Christian Democrat and Social Democrat coalition will retain a majority, albeit a bit smaller one. It appears, however, that the ruling party is trying to portray the surge in interest in the AfD as the result of Russia “manipulating” the media.
Of course the more likely explanation is that the AfD is riding the same wave of concern about the EU that led to the Brexit vote earlier this year, and simply mirrors similar surges in anti-EU sentiment that have been seen across the continent. The comments appear to be setting the stage for that narrative for the ruling coalition as an attempt to try to slow the AfD’s growth, and ensure that the current majority is ultimately kept safe, by hook or by crook.
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