With a single vote in a regional election, the far-right Alternative for Germany party, or AfD, exposed the weakness of Germany’s political establishment and its own growing importance in national politics, ICWA fellow Emily Schultheis (Germany, 2019-2021) writes in an opinion piece for CNN.

By voting with two centrist parties, the Christian Democrats (CDU) and Free Democrats, in Thuringia to help defeat the state’s left-wing prime minister, the AfD broke through a long-standing refusal to cooperate with the far right. The political fallout was swift.

“In staging the political chaos in Thuringia,” Emily writes, “the AfD played on several well-known undercurrents in German politics at the moment: That their actions in a country extra-sensitive to the far right would bring a wave of outrage and headlines; that [CDU party leader Annagret] Kramp-Karrenbauer’s position within the CDU was shaky; that their strength in the east has made it exceptionally difficult to build stable governments while still refusing to work with them.”

Read the full article here.

Link to photo credit here.