Kubicki rumbles before the Epiphany meeting: Greens "haven't really arrived yet"
Created: 05/01/2023 17:51
By: Jens Kiffmeier
Nuclear power or fracking: Wolfgang Kubicki (FDP) sends the Greens a declaration of war before the Epiphany meeting in 2023.
Does coalition trouble help in the downward trend?
Berlin - Clear edge instead of lazy compromises: After an election year 2022 peppered with bitter defeats, the FDP wants to get back on the road to success.
Shortly before the Epiphany 2023 meeting in Stuttgart, more and more liberals are calling for a sharper profile within the traffic light coalition.
Above all, the Green Party's strict no to nuclear power is a thorn in the side of many.
Bundestag Vice President Wolfgang Kubicki has now sent the coalition partner a clear declaration of war on the issue.
But can the well-calculated coalition trouble really save the FDP?
Epiphany meeting 2023 of the FDP: Wolfgang Kubicki wants to differentiate himself from the Greens in nuclear power
"We are seeing that the green friends in particular are having to deal with a reality shock," Wolfgang Kubicki teased shortly before the start of the traditional Epiphany meeting of the FDP.
The Vice-President of the Bundestag admitted to IPPEN.MEDIA's
Greens had gone the longest way in terms of energy policy in view of the energy crisis last year.
Nevertheless, Kubicki complained about the wrong emphasis on the Greens.
"But they haven't quite arrived in reality when we see that nuclear power from Germany is condemned, while we also secure our energy supply with French nuclear power plants," criticized the liberal politician.
Criticizing the Greens before the Epiphany meeting of the FDP: Bundestag Vice President Wolfgang Kubicki.
© Jonas Walzberg/Kay Nietfeld/dpa/Montage
Epiphany meeting in Stuttgart: FDP wants to initiate a turnaround in the super election year 2023
From Friday (January 6th) the Liberals will meet in the Stuttgart Opera House.
Traditionally, the party meets there at the Epiphany meeting to usher in the new year.
But this time there is a lot at stake: with state elections in Berlin, Bremen, Hesse and Bavaria, 2023 is a super election year.
Recently things hadn't really gone smoothly for the Liberals.
Despite the start of the traffic light coalition, the government was kicked out of government in North Rhine-Westphalia and Schleswig-Holstein last year, and in Lower Saxony it was not even enough to get back into the state parliament.
Extension of the lifespan for nuclear power plants (AKW): Kubicki makes clear demands before the Epiphany meeting in 2023
The reason was quickly identified for many in the ailing party: in the more left-wing federal government with SPD and Greens, the FDP was forced to make many compromises during the energy crisis, which would have diluted the liberal profile.
Kubicki also confirms this.
The FDP would have pushed through a short-term extension of the operating times for the nuclear power plants (NPP) and will continue to "drill heavy holes" in the coming months in order to "help reason achieve a breakthrough," said Kubicki.
But that alone is not enough.
This process of persuasion does not go fast enough for many of our supporters, which is why they are strangers to the coalition.
Wolfgang Kubicki (FDP), Vice President of the Bundestag
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"For many of our supporters, this process of persuasion doesn't go fast enough, so they are strangers to the coalition," said Kubicki to
, adding: "It therefore remains our task to be even more consistent with our political line internally and externally to represent.” In other words: clear demarcation against the Greens.
For Kubicki, this primarily concerns two issues: In addition to the question of a renewed extension of the nuclear power plant lifetime, Kubicki also spoke out in this context for the mining of shale gas through fracking in Germany - instead of buying it with taxpayers' money in the USA.
"If we had started streamlining the planning processes after the Russian invasion of Ukraine last spring, we would have been able to produce shale gas from domestic sources by now," said the FDP politician.
Technically, this is possible within six months.
"The fact that we are instead relocating value creation and jobs abroad is unreasonable and incomprehensible."
Nuclear power and fracking: FDP wants a clear edge against the Greens at Epiphany meetings
Whether nuclear power or fracking - for the Greens, both positions are non-negotiable.
A few months ago, after a word of power from Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD), the eco-party agreed to a compromise on nuclear energy.
Due to possible bottlenecks in the energy supply and the threat of blackouts in winter, the nuclear phase-out was postponed by three months.
Actually, the three remaining kilns Isar 2, Neckarwestheim 2 and Emsland in Lingen, Lower Saxony, should be shut down at the end of December.
They will now remain connected to the grid in an emergency mode until April 2023.
After that, for the Greens and the SPD, there should definitely be an end to nuclear energy in Germany.
But for the FDP, that's far from settled.
For days, top politicians in the party have been rattling this compromise.
After Federal Transport Minister Volker Wissing and Secretary General Bijan Djir-Sarai had made the start, FDP party leader Christian Lindner followed on Thursday and called for the use of nuclear power beyond April.
State elections in Hesse and Bavaria: Epiphany meeting of the FDP to initiate trend reversal in polls
In the party, the more bold tones are obviously eagerly awaited.
"2023 must bring the trend reversal for the Free Democrats," wrote the FDP top candidates in the state elections in Hesse and Bavaria, Stefan Naas and Martin Hagen, in a joint position paper shortly before the Epiphany meeting.
The party must "show a clear edge against a climate ideology that is hostile to growth and capitalism," it said.
Both fracking and extending the lifespan of nuclear power plants should no longer remain taboo.
Against this background, the FDP appears united before its Epiphany meeting in 2023.
It remains to be seen whether the appearance will start to scratch if the hoped-for trend reversal does not materialize in the first state elections.
The party currently sees itself properly positioned in terms of personnel.
At least the leadership role of party leader Christian Lindner is not questioned.
Kubicki believes that he is capable of initiating the turnaround: “As finance minister, Christian Lindner is doing an outstanding job in this difficult situation and is making a major contribution to Germany’s financial stability in Europe.
And as chairman of the Free Democrats, I can't imagine anyone better than him," said the Bundestag Vice President of Lindner's dual role as finance minister and party leader, adding.
"He is and will remain the mainstay of the party." (