From red / dpa / lsw
Stuttgart elects a new mayor on Sunday. Why is the outcome of the election so important? Why are the Greens out? And who has the best chance of winning? An overview.
Stuttgart – At least one thing is absolutely certain before the decisive ballot on Sunday: Stuttgart will get a new mayor, after eight years the Greens will have to hand over the scepter. However, who will take the place of the incumbent Mayor Fritz Kuhn is completely unclear even a few days before the new election. There is a clear winner from the first ballot. But a lot can still happen on the way to the town hall.
Who are the favorites for the new election on Sunday?
At least on paper, it looks like a clear favorite for the new election on November 29th. In the first ballot, CDU candidate Frank Nopper won 31.8 percent of the vote – a clear lead. He also leads according to the latest survey by the University of Hohenheim. His strongest competitor, Veronika Kienzle, only got 17.2 percent three weeks ago and was disappointed. So there are still the social democrat Marian Schreier (15 percent), who, according to the Hohenheim survey, could double this share, and Stuttgart city councilor Hannes Rockenbauch from the SÖS / Linke parliamentary alliance (14 percent).
Why is the outcome of the OB election so important?
Stuttgart’s town hall was a bastion of the CDU for decades. After Kuhn’s election victory, the city was considered a stronghold of the Greens. Now they are losing the top position, which not only costs them influence and prestige. The loss of the top of the town hall could also be interpreted as a bad omen for the state elections in March 2021. The Greens reject this and emphasize that OB elections are regional personality choices. For the CDU, a victory in Stuttgart in return would of course be good advertising for the election at state level next March.
Why are the Greens no longer in the race?
Kienzle failed twice: On the one hand, due to her rather reserved manner, she did not succeed in convincing the voters in the Öko-Bastion Stuttgart of the profile and program. On the other hand, after the defeat in the first ballot, she did not manage to get the other promising applicants from the center-left camp behind her. She saw no more chances for an eco-social majority, she finally admitted – and gave up annoyed.
In addition, many people from Stuttgart had hoped for Kuhn in the 2012 election and were disappointed. And that none of the prominent Greens like Cem Özdemir or the President of the State Parliament Muhterem Aras wanted to throw their hat into the ring in the election this year.
What speaks for the CDU candidate Nopper?
After the first election, the Lord Mayor of Backnang goes into the decision with a tailwind – and without competition from the conservative, business-minded spectrum. Nopper builds on his good reputation as mayor in the municipality in the Stuttgart suburbs, he refers to his roots in the state capital and to his political experience. In addition, his conservative program is hardly vulnerable, in contrast to, for example, Rockenbauch’s left-wing political catalog.
Read here: Frank Nopper has plans for Stuttgart – his statements in the candidate check
Nopper’s mobilized CDU base will certainly remain with him in the second ballot. And the 59-year-old banker and lawyer can only be happy that two candidates take away each other’s votes. The Greens seem to have capitulated: They reject a recommendation for one of the other two OB opponents Noppers.
How could Marian Schreier win?
The incumbent Mayor of Tengen builds on modern concepts, on the youth, the digital – and on the middle. “There’s a relatively conservative offer and a relatively left-wing offer,” he says. “But I am of the opinion that the voters want a progressive offer in the political center.”
Read here: This is what Marian Schreier has in mind with Stuttgart – his statements in the candidate check
Before the election, the 30-year-old seems to have a project ready for all questions from rental prices to climate change to the lack of trails for mountain bikers. He vehemently advocates the thesis that nothing is progressing in Stuttgart. But he is not even recommended by his own party, whose candidate is no longer running. Because after a dispute over his candidacy, Schreier has to put his SPD membership on hold in the election campaign, and Greens and Rockenbauch are pushing the buck after the failed talks.
Could there be a surprise winner too?
In addition to Nopper and Schreier, City Councilor Rockenbauch is also one of the broader favorites, but he has to catch up with the most votes with the most radical program and does worse than his competition in the most recent poll.
Read here: That’s what Hannes Rockenbauch has in mind with Stuttgart – his statements in the candidate check
The 40-year-old has so far become known as a kind of spokesman for the extra-parliamentary opposition in the Stuttgart city council. He formulates his climate goals more sharply than the other applicants – a climate-neutral city by 2030, as car-free as possible and with free local transport. That could pass him Kienzle voters and young “Fridays for Future” supporters.
The 40-year-old is also a figurehead of the movement against S 21. That should prevent many from voting for him. Opponents of the station project, on the other hand, have probably already ticked them when they made their first choice.
Why is there no runoff in the second ballot?
The second ballot is a completely new ballot. Although the candidates try to derive their chances from the ranking of the first ballot, the cards are shuffled again for the new election. In contrast to the first ballot, the candidate who gets the most votes wins. In contrast to other federal states, there is no run-off vote in Baden-Württemberg if no applicant reaches an absolute majority in the first ballot.