AfD has to pay a fine of more than 500,000 euros (neue-deutschland.de)

AfD parliamentary group leader Alice Weidel

Photo: dpa / Martin Schutt

Berlin. The AfD will again pay a fine of more than half a million euros for unlawfully received donations. Corresponding notices were sent to the party on Thursday, the Bundestag administration announced on request.

It is mainly about the case of today’s parliamentary group leader Alice Weidel. From July to September 2017, according to the Bundestag, the business account of their former AfD district association Bodensee received donations via several individual transfers totaling around 132,000 euros from Swiss accounts. The Bundestag announced that there was a violation of the prohibition enshrined in the Political Parties Act to accept donations that amount to more than 500 euros in individual cases and whose donors cannot be identified. As is customary in such cases, the AfD should pay a fine of three times the rate of this illegally obtained donation – around 396,000 euros.

The AfD had submitted a list of donors. In June 2019, however, she announced, according to the Bundestag administration, “that eight alleged donors had now declared to the Konstanz public prosecutor that they had not donated.” The AfD therefore further explained to the Bundestag administration that it therefore “does not have any reliable knowledge of who the real donor is”.

The letter from the Bundestag to the AfD states that the actual donor is named in account documents that were secured by the Swiss judiciary as part of a request for legal assistance. The donor, a businessman, did not comment on the matter when asked by the Konstanz public prosecutor, which is investigating the matter.

According to the Bundestag administration, the second case is an event with the title “European Visions – Visions for Europe” in Düsseldorf in February 2016. The costs of the event were therefore more than 36,000 euros. The Bundestag administration also regards this as an illegally obtained donation. In this case, too, it was a violation of the ban on accepting donations whose donors could not be identified. Again, the triple rate was applied, which makes a fine of 108,000 euros.

“The arguments of the Bundestag administration in today’s decision on the ‘K Bodenseekreis’ procedure cannot be understood by the AfD Federal Association,” said a party spokesman. The federal executive will therefore discuss in its next conference call next Monday whether a lawsuit against this decision will be filed with the Berlin administrative court within the month. The AfD party chairman Tino Chrupalla said that the funds transferred at the time had been repaid and not used

In the legal dispute with the administration of the Bundestag about inadmissible party donations for its chairman Jörg Meuthen, the AfD gave in last June and paid a fine of almost 270,000 euros. After a defeat in the first instance, the federal executive decided to waive the previously announced appeal procedure.

For Meuthen, who was also criticized within the party because of the events, the settlement of the legal dispute meant relief. In the similar case of AfD MEP Guido Reil, which is about 130,000 euros, according to information from board members, it has now been decided to accept the fine. Agencies / nd

.

AfD federal party conference may take place: Not nice, but right

It cannot be ruled out that the AfD party congress will become a superspreading event. Nevertheless, it is correct that the city of Kalkar has now approved it.

Inside the party under attack: AfD boss Jörg Meuthen Photo: dpa

The city of Kalkar has approved that the AfD’s federal party conference can be held at the fair there on the last weekend in November. Despite Corona and shutdown light. You can find that terrible because you consider the AfD to be right-wing extremists anyway, want stricter corona regulations or fear that the party congress could become a superspreading event.

In principle, however, it is right that ministries and authorities check very carefully what is prohibited because of the pandemic. Parties are an important part of democracy and are therefore under special protection and have special rights – even in times of pandemic. This applies to all parties that are not prohibited. So also for the AfD. Nevertheless, one does not have to like the fact that of all people, the party that likes to agitate against the allegedly depraved party democracy now benefits particularly from it. But that is also part of democracy.

It is still wrong that the party congress is now likely to take place. Because, of course, a two-day meeting in a closed room, to which 600 delegates and 150 journalists could travel, assumes an increased risk of infection. Especially because a good number of corona skeptics will come together in Kalkar who think little of protective measures.

It is only logical that the AfD is proceeding differently from the CDU, the Greens and the Left, who have either postponed their party conventions or hold online. After all, the party is fighting the corona measures, and many AfD members have doubts about the danger of the virus or even deny its existence. For a long time, the party, which has lost the mobilization issue, has been trying to dock with the corona skeptic movement – so far without much success. With the party congress, staged as a resistance, but it could score points in this milieu.

It was not without reason that party leader Jörg Meuthen recently announced that he wanted to apply for approval for the party congress if necessary. The city of Kalkar has now taken this opportunity from the AfD to make it public. The fact that the party now wants to take legal action against the mask requirement at the square, which is part of the necessary requirements, should also have something to do with it.

The federal meeting is also an important sign within the party. The exclusion from the party of right-wing extremist Andreas Kalbitz has built up a lot of resentment against part of the AfD leadership. If this part of party leader Meuthen and Vice Beatrix von Storch were in favor of another postponement, it would look like cowardly ducking away. Especially since Meuthen cannot prevail with his original position in the content-related part of the event, the adoption of a pension concept. And the other part is hoping for a settlement anyway.

.

AfD concept: basic income only for Germans

Logo of AfD

The party wants to try out the concept in test regions.

(Photo: dpa)

Berlin At their planned federal party conference at the end of November, the AfD wants to discuss a model for a basic income that excludes foreigners. As the German press agency found out, the two party chairmen Tino Chrupalla and Jörg Meuthen are behind a corresponding application. The text was officially submitted to the AfD headquarters last Thursday.

The concept was developed by René Springer, member of the Bundestag from Brandenburg. It stipulates that every German citizen who resides permanently in Germany will receive 500 euros from the state from birth – without an application or a needs test.

According to this model, those who earn enough would pay less income tax at the end of the year instead of receiving the money – similar to what is already the case with child benefit today.

According to the AfD politicians, foreigners should still have to submit an application in order to receive social benefits after a means test.

It is conceivable that integrated foreigners with permanent right of residence acquire a right to “citizenship money” if they have earned taxable income in Germany for ten years and were thus able to earn their own living, says Springer. “This would be a strong incentive to integrate into our society.”

According to his model, Germans without a job who need money from the office for rent would also have to submit an application. The signatories of the paper also include the Bavarian state chairman Corinna Miazga and the social politician Uwe Witt. According to current planning, a decision is to be made at a party congress in Kalkar, North Rhine-Westphalia, at the end of November.

The opposition party’s motion also suggests the establishment of a parliamentary study commission to deal with new social security models such as “citizenship money”. In addition, the AfD politicians are in favor of a statutory opening clause so that their model can be tested in pilot projects.

Meuthen: No constitutional concerns

In addition to the basic income previously favored by left-wing politicians, the proposal also provides for a simplification of income tax law. With an annual income of up to 250,000 euros, a tax rate of 25 percent should apply. 50 percent income tax should be paid on income in excess of this amount.

The concept is probably also an attempt to defuse an internal party conflict that has been simmering for years. In this dispute, the economically liberal wing around Meuthen and Bundestag parliamentary group leader Alice Weidel stand against supporters of the right-wing national tendency from the East, who tend to rely on more state in socio-political issues.

Meuthen is not afraid that her model might not be constitutional because of the discrimination against foreigners. He says: “A system like our model of citizenship money can only function properly if social migration into the system is consistently prevented.”

The fact that Chrupalla and Meuthen are both in favor of the initiative is remarkable in itself. In the past few months, according to party sources, the two chairpersons only spoke bare essentials.

AfD chairmen Meuthen and Chrupalla

The move is also intended to defuse the conflict between the economically liberal and right-wing national wing.

(Photo: AFP)

Chrupalla was upset about the way Meuthen and his supporters orchestrated the expulsion of the former Brandenburg AfD state chief Andreas Kalbitz. “Citizenship money is an idea worth discussing – we would like to research whether it ultimately works in practice in selected test regions,” says Chrupalla.

He expects “that the party congress will discuss this passionately and certainly also controversially”. In view of the announced corona contact restrictions, however, it is not certain whether the 600 AfD delegates will even be able to meet on November 28th.

In Kalkar, the opposition party wants to fill two new board positions and decide on its pension and social policy program. At the moment, however, it is questionable whether the party conference can even take place with a view to the new Corona Protection Ordinance of NRW.

But it shouldn’t fail because of the pandemic, says Meuthen. He says: “Our social policy program is very advanced and regardless of the question of whether this party congress can take place in November, it will be included in the overall program of the party at the earliest possible point in time.”

More: The Protection of the Constitution warns: Höcke-wing pushes radicalization of the AfD

.

SZ podcast “On the Point” – News from 01.10.2020 – Politics

There has been a lot going on in the AfD over the past few weeks: Starting with the dissolution of the right-wing extremist “wing”, the expulsion of Andreas Kalbitz from the party, the dissolution of the parliamentary groups in Lower Saxony and Schleswig-Holstein to the unsavory statements made by the former press spokesman for the Bundestag parliamentary group Christian Lüth .

Now party spokesman Jörg Meuthen has decided not to run for the Bundestag, thus avoiding a controversy with the rest of the party’s leadership team. Jens Schneider describes the relationship between Meuthen, Alexander Gauland, Alice Weidel and co-speaker Tino Chrupalla as bad. The SZ capital correspondent, however, warns against underestimating the AfD in next year’s general election.

Other topics: EU initiates legal action against Great Britain, Wirecard committee of inquiry, Wirt receives one million euros from insurance.

How to subscribe to our news podcast

“To the point” is the SZ news podcast with the most important topics of the day. The podcast always appears at 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. You can find all episodes on sz.de/nachrichtenpodcast. Don’t miss an episode and subscribe to our audio offer, for example on: iTunes, Spotify, Deezer, Audio Now or in your favorite podcast app. In this text we explain how you can listen to our podcasts. You can find all of our podcasts at: www.sz.de/podcast.

You have any questions or suggestions? Then write to us: podcast@sz.de.

.

Resolute landlady (neues-deutschland.de)

Stefanie Struzina put AfD boss Jörg Meuthen outside the local door.

Photo: frankphoto.de

Finding locations has been difficult for the AfD for some time now. It was only announced on Monday that the party would not find a hall for its next party congress in Lower Saxony, for example. The unwillingness to house and host them does not only affect the party as a whole. Their representatives are also sometimes faced with this kind of rejection. So these days in Suhl, Thuringia.

There on the last Thursday evening Stefanie Struzina, host of the cinema bar “Rick’s”, announced four entrants who wanted an alcoholic cold drink: “AfD people don’t get beer from me.” the federal executive board was in town the next day, and three companions outside the door.

»Jörg Meuthen (AFD party chairman) house ban granted! CHECK, «the 38-year-old subsequently announced on Facebook. Since then, as with the short message service Twitter, there has been discussion, Struzina’s action has been praised and condemned, solidarity and a visit to the bar, but also boycott, and the question of house rights has been discussed. On Facebook alone there are well over 2000 comments.

As the native of Leipzig reported to the daily newspaper “Freies Wort”, the cinema bar, which she only took over in January, had a reputation for being a “right-wing radical bar”. With the expulsion of Meuthen and the public discussion about it, this call should have been finally settled. Struzina’s satisfaction. “The majority of my guests find the local ban for the AfD correct,” the landlady explained to the “Free Word”. Suhler, who might have avoided the location because of this, would also have praised it.

“My audience is changing,” said Struzina. You will probably lose guests, but: “Many new ones will be added.” At least on social media, many commentators have already announced this.

.

AfD right-wing extremist Kalbitz wins in court: only one stage win

Andreas Kalbitz remains in the AfD for the time being, for party leader Jörg Meuthen this is a tough slap. The party arbitrator will have the final say.

From Monday onwards he will be present again at the AfD federal executive’s conference call: Kalbitz Photo: dpa

BERLIN taz | The reaction was immediate. Only a short time after the Berlin district court on Friday afternoon had declared the exclusion of Andreas Kalbitz by the AfD federal executive to be inadmissible, Björn Höcke posted a photo of Kalbitz and himself. “Welcome back!” And after much praise about Kalbitz, who, together with Höcke, heads the officially dissolved but still active “wing”, the attack on party leader Jörg Meuthen follows immediately.

“For the third time in our very young party history, one of our federal spokespeople wants to silence parts of the party or even force them out of the party,” wrote Höcke. Meuthen was not only talking about division, he also wanted to split the AfD against the will of the majority. “That must have an end.”

The “wing”, which the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution recently classified as extreme right, feels strengthened by the decision of the Berlin regional court – and that is it, first of all. For Meuthen, the decision of the court is a tough blow. But Kalbitz, Höcke and Co. have by no means won the battle for power in the AfD. The judicial decision is only a stage win.

The Berlin regional court has approved Kalbitz’s application for an injunction. By the end of the main proceedings, in which Kalbitz is suing the annulment of his membership by the federal executive board, the right-wing extremist is again a member of the AfD, and he can again exercise his party offices in Brandenburg and the federal government. On Monday, the 47-year-old bald man will probably be there again at the weekly conference call of the federal executive board.

The actual decision is still pending, however, the regional court has not commented on the content. The party’s arbitral tribunal must now rule them. The regional court also ruled that the federal executive board cannot simply bypass the party court if membership is withdrawn – but that is exactly what Meuthen and his colleagues did. How the decision of the AfD arbitral tribunal will go is open.

Opponents of Kalbitz also had doubts about Meuthen’s approach

But it will be difficult for Meuthen. Five weeks ago, he had only applied to the federal executive committee for the cancellation of Kalbitz’s membership, which he then – with the support of party vice-president Beatrix von Storch – enforced by a narrow majority and has since maintained that the procedure is legally watertight. What the Berlin district court refuted on Friday.

The legally shaky construction had led to the fact that opponents of Kalbitz also had doubts about the course of action of their party leader. Only a few supported him openly, which should also be due to opportunism, which is quite widespread in the AfD, and the influence of the “wing”. With the decision of the regional court, Meuthen’s strategic calculation did not work out either: that Kalbitz would lose influence if he was no longer a party member for a longer period.

Meuthen’s opponents at the top of the party, which include his co-spokesman Tino Chrupalla and Federal Vice Stephan Brandner and the two chairmen of the parliamentary group, Alexander Gauland and Alice Weidel, have already made it clear before the decision that those responsible would be troubled in the event of a legal defeat threatens. On Friday, Chrupalla couldn’t or didn’t even want to stay in shape. When asked by ZDF whether Meuthen should now resign, Chrupalla only said: “I won’t say anything about that.”

Gauland, on the other hand, said: “I can therefore now only appeal to the narrow majority on the federal executive board to consider whether they want to continue the legal dispute, since this obviously leads to collateral damage in the party and Bundestag faction.” The own ranks Welcoming returned Kalbitz and simply continuing as before, is not a real option given the deep division of the party leadership. And Gauland should know that too.

Meuthen is now taking revenge that Kalbitz’s expulsion was justified formally – and not also because Kalbitz is a right-wing extremist. In doing so, he gave not only his supporters, but also his opponents the opportunity to avoid the actually crucial question: whether a right-wing extremist like Kalbitz, in whose résumé one relevant organization follows the next, of which the now-banned neo-Nazi -Organization Loyal to German youth (HDJ) only the closest to National Socialism – whether such a man can be an AfD member. Answering this positively, among other things, would have been significantly more difficult for Weidel than withdrawing from the position that the procedure followed had not been adequately examined.

Meuthen had justified his request by saying that when Kalbitz joined the party, he had kept secret memberships of the Republicans and the HDJ, which he should have stated under the statutes. While Kalbitz admitted a few years ago that he was involved in the reps, he continues to deny membership in the HDJ, and even submitted a corresponding affidavit to the court.

A neo-Nazi relieves Kalbitz

Kalbitz’s lawyer also presented a second document of this kind, signed by a militant neo-Nazi who has a criminal record: Sebastian Räbiger, the former head of the HDJ. He confirms how the time first reported that the HDJ files did not differentiate between interested parties, candidates and members. That is to say: The membership number for the “Andreas Kalbitz family” that the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution claims to be proof that Kalbitz was really a member of the HDJ. However, it does not prove the opposite. And it shows: Kalbitz’s contacts with the ex-boss of the HDJ are still so good that he can cite him as a kind of leniency.

For his part, Meuthen tried to give the impression on Friday evening that he was waiting calmly for the decision of the arbitral tribunal. This Saturday, however, if the convention, a kind of small party congress of the AfD, does not meet in public, it could already be uncomfortable for Meuthen. Members from Lower Saxony want a decision that the discussion instigated by Meuthen about splitting two party wings was “party-damaging and disintegrating”. If Meuthen couldn’t have one, personal consequences would have to follow. And Thuringian Convention members want to discuss the state of affairs in the legal dispute over Meuthen’s donation affair – and thus address another sore point of the party leader.

So whether Meuthen survives the Kalbitz dispute politically is more than uncertain. But there is still a chance that the arbitral tribunal will follow his request, Kalbitz will have to leave the party, and the wing will lose its most influential string puller. And this would not be possible without Meuthen’s daring move. For a classic party expulsion procedure against Kalbitz, which is also lengthy and unpredictable, a two-thirds majority would have been required on the federal executive board. But there was no such thing. Meuthen put everything on one card. And could lose everything.

.

“Sunday trend”: AfD falls to its lowest value since September 2017

Germany “Sunday trend”

AfD falls to its lowest level since September 2017

| Reading time: 2 minutes

AfD politicians Alice Weidel (left) and Alexander Gauland in the Bundestag - the party is currently suffering losses in polls

AfD politicians Alice Weidel (left) and Alexander Gauland in the Bundestag – the party is currently suffering losses in polls

Source: REUTERS

For the fourth time in a row, the AfD has deteriorated in the “Sunday trend” and is now at eight percent. There is a head-to-head race between the SPD and the Greens. The Union is losing, remains stable at a high level.

So bad as in these days the mood in the AfD may have been rare. The party has fallen in the “Sunday trend” of “Bild am Sonntag” to the lowest value since September 2017. In the poll conducted by the Kantar polling institute, the party lost a percentage point for the fourth time in a row compared to the previous week and is now at eight percent.

Observers see various reasons for this trend: The leadership of the AfD is at odds. The fear of a possible observation of the whole party by the protection of the constitution causes additional unrest.

But the Union also loses two percentage points according to the “Sunday trend”, but remains clearly the strongest at 38 percent. The Greens are in second place in the electoral favor with 16 percent, gaining a point and pulling past the SPD.

Another survey confirms the trend

The Social Democrats lose one point: 15 percent of the respondents stated that they would vote for the SPD if the Bundestag election took place next Sunday. The left wins a point and comes to eight percent, while the FDP loses one point and lands at seven percent.

The parties saw a Forsa survey for the RTL / n-tv trend barometer on Saturday at similar values. There, too, the AfD lost one percentage point and fell to eight percent – and thus its worst value since August 2017. This survey also saw the Union at 40 percent, the SPD, according to its analysis, was ahead of the Greens at 16 percent with 16 percent ( -1), the left at eight percent and the FDP at six.

From May 28 to June 3, 2020, Kantar surveyed a total of 1,428 people for “Bild am Sonntag”. The question was: “Which party would you choose if there were general elections next Sunday?”

.

Power struggle in the AfD: Will Meuthen prevail?

SAndreas Kalbitz has not been a member of the AfD for two weeks. The decision to cancel the membership of the former Brandenburg head of state and organizer of the far-right “wing” left the party in a state of excitement. However, federal chairman Jörg Meuthen, who pushed Kalbitz out of the party executive board with a small majority, is convinced that the unrest will subside. Meuthen announced this week that he would gradually be able to explain the matter to the party and to the supporters of Kalbitz in eastern Germany.

It won’t be easy. Because the division in the party and at the top is deep. At the most recent conference call by the federal executive board on Monday, the representatives of both camps threatened each other with lawsuits and lawsuits, it is said. The controversial leadership is cautious with insults. But Alexander Gauland, parliamentary group leader in the Bundestag, repeats his sentence that it will be difficult for everyone “who started it” should Kalbitz be successful in suing the decision. Gauland, his co-parliamentary group leader Alice Weidel and the co-party leader Tino Chrupalla are outraged that Meuthen has bumped them out by organizing a majority of assessors and secretaries against them on the federal executive board. They do not speak of treason, as Kalbitz’s closest colleague, Thuringian country chief Björn Höcke, did. But the insult is also deep.

.

Power struggle in the AfD: The chaos after the Kalbitz cause

Does Andreas Kalbitz’s expulsion from the AfD endure? Does the party split? Who mutinates against Meuthen? Here are the answers.

Andreas Kalbitz (front) has announced to take action against the party exclusion from the AfD Photo: Soeren Stache / dpa

On May 15, about a quarter past five, two men are standing on the balcony at Kurfürstenstrasse 79 in Berlin-Tiergarten, one on the fifth and the other on the sixth floor. They are the two party leaders of the AfD. Jörg Meuthen above, Tino Chrupalla below. A symbolic picture.

Meuthen has just won a victory on the federal board that meets here, Chrupalla has lost. The head of the AfD, Andreas Kalbitz, head of the AfD’s state and parliamentary group in Brandenburg and until a few minutes ago part of this body, revoked party membership with immediate effect. A narrow majority of seven to five votes with one abstention were sufficient.

The formal reason: According to the majority, Kalbitz, when it applied to join the AfD in 2013, did not disclose his previous membership with the Republicans and the now banned neo-Nazi organization Heimattreue Deutsche Jugend (HDJ). According to the statutes, he should have specified both. Since then, the power struggle in the AfD, which always accompanies the party subliminally, has been conducted openly and with all severity. Five dimensions of the conflict and an outlook.

The power: uncertain conditions and a lot of fuss

Although only about a third of the AfD members belong to the extreme right wing, decisions against it are hardly enforceable. Most recently, Jörg Meuthen failed in the debate about a pension concept with the demand to abolish the statutory pension, also on the “wing”.

The party leader, who allowed himself to be voted into office by the far-right network and has pacted with it for a long time, has grown too powerful. And not only for him: officials, especially from the West, put Meuthen under pressure to finally do something. Meuthen only pushed through the decision of the federal executive board that the “wing” must disintegrate. Now he took care of Andreas Kalbitz’s expulsion. A declaration of war.

Björn Höcke promptly shouted “treason”, Götz Kubitschek, Höcke’s whisperer from the Institute for State Policy, accused Meuthen of setting the party on fire. The heads of state from Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt stood behind Kalbitz. The Brandenburg faction resumed its leader even without a party book. It calls for a special party conference at which a new federal executive board is to be elected.

Otherwise it has been surprisingly quiet so far. The regional association of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania was not clearly on the side of Kalbitz: “There are different views, per Kalbitz, versus Kalbitz,” said head of state Leif-Erik Holm to the NDR. The whole thing had to be clarified before the arbitral tribunal.

And even in Brandenburg, the majority of the parliamentary group prevented Kalbitz from being confirmed as the leader of the parliamentary group. Because here too the criticism of the Munich native is increasing. Even the Young freedom, still the most important press organ for the AfD, has long since shot its way into the “wing”.

The structure: fragile alliances and an old man

The AfD is an alliance of different currents, some with very different ideas, strategies and goals. Street or parliament? Revolt or government participation? NPD light or CDU of the seventies and eighties? Ethnic or economically liberal social policy? These are some of the lines of conflict in the party.

The now “formally dissolved” wing “with Andreas Kalbitz and Björn Höcke at the top has steadily expanded its influence in recent years, it is dominant in the east and very successful in elections. He does not yet have a majority in the party as a whole, also because the vast majority of AfD members live in the West.

The cohesion within the party has so far been based on the assumption that the AfD’s success is based precisely on this fragile alliance of different currents. The party held together, above all, parliamentary group leader Alexander Gauland. But its influence is waning. He gave up party leadership at the end of last year.

The legal process: contradictory assessments and a missing form

Andreas Kalbitz has announced that he will take legal action against the party exclusion both before the AfD arbitral tribunal and before an ordinary court. He doesn’t have bad cards. The Düsseldorf party rights activist Sophie Schönberger told the taz that a cancellation of membership under the Political Parties Act was fundamentally not lawful and that an ordinary party exclusion procedure could not be avoided. An ordinary court will most likely collect the decision.

In addition, it looks difficult with the evidence for Kalbitz’s offenses. His application for membership has been lost, so one lists witnesses and the electronic membership file. There should be information about his previous party and association membership – if he did it.

The AfD does not have proof of membership in the HDJ, which Kalbitz continues to deny, but only the protection of the constitution, who is otherwise happy to be discredited. And Republican membership, which Kalbitz has kept secret for a long time, has been known for several years.

On the other hand: Jena constitutional lawyer Michael Brenner expects that the exclusion will last, as he told the MDR. In addition, the AfD has already canceled membership in comparable cases, for example in the case of Dennis Augustin, the former head of state in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.

Protection of the Constitution: new influence and a panic surge

The extreme right biography of Andreas Kalbitz has been known for a long time. There were many stations in right-wing extremist associations, and there have been new revelations since 2014. For a long time, this was of little interest to the AfD. Kalbitz was gripping and successful, he organized majorities. It was reliable. Jörg Meuthen also benefited from this.

But then the constitutional protection came on the scene and panicked parts of the AfD. First he classified the “wing” as a right-wing extremist and as a full observation object. The most important reason for this, in addition to Björn Höcke’s speeches and writings: Kalbitz. The authority is currently examining whether the AfD as a whole is at least an extreme right-wing suspected case, a decision is expected soon.

A classification, it is feared in particular in the West AfD, could deter voters and, above all, the numerous civil servants: internally among members and functionaries: internally. Jobs and pensions are at stake for them.

The competition: personal ambitions and a top candidate

As is so often the case in the AfD, it is also about personal interests. Jörg Meuthen is considering moving to the Bundestag next year, where he could inherit Gauland as the top candidate and group leader. To do this, he has to win supporters, since he had recently offended many in the party through his pension concept and the idea that the “wing” might split off from the AfD.

And then there’s Alice Weidel in the way, Alexander Gauland’s Co-Group leader and Federal Vice, who probably wants to continue; the two cannot go together. And because both come from Baden-Württemberg and are party-internal as economically liberal, they are not capable of winning a majority as a team. This is where Meuthen’s co-party leader Tino Chrupalla comes into play – the Saxon is and the “wing” is benevolent.

In addition: Weidel has concluded a kind of non-aggression pact with the “wing”, on the Federal Executive Board voted against the Meuthen proposal, but argued purely formally. The woman likes to keep herself covered as long as the balance of power has not yet been decided. But if Meuthen falls as party leader, Weidel could be ready. Another one of the supposedly more moderate who pacts with the “wing”.

And the outlook?

The dispute almost looks like a new edition of old conflicts: around ex-party leader Bernd Lucke in 2015 and his successor Frauke Petry in 2017. Both were subject to the “wing” in the power struggle, both ended up in political insignificance.

But it is not that simple. Protection of the constitution has sparked a new dynamic in the party, which is already nervous about the dwindling approval of the Corona crisis.

So far, the murmur that Meuthen may no longer be a party leader by the end of the year is no more than that. It is questionable whether there will be a party congress – also due to corona – and the AfD has also planned one for the end of the year anyway No hall found yet. In addition, a two-thirds majority is required to vote out the federal board elected in December.

Bringing these together becomes difficult. And that in the end the party will still split? That is not entirely out of the question. But whoever goes would have to forego the name and structure of the party, which nobody wants. In such a case, the “wing” would become a regional party, a kind of “Lega Ost”. And the others would probably have to do without elections. But first everyone is waiting to see how the legal review of the Kalbitz case ends. A lot will depend on it.

.

AfD: New argument for Andreas Kalbitz ‘opponent – politics

A document confirms the suspicion that Kalbitz did not indicate problematic connections to the extreme right-wing milieu when he was admitted to the AfD.

In the dispute over the expulsion of AfD right winger Andreas Kalbitz, a new document could strengthen the position of Chairman Jörg Meuthen. A list of members that became known on Tuesday confirms the suspicion that the former Brandenburg head of state did not specify problematic connections to the extreme right-wing milieu when he was admitted to the AfD, contrary to the AfD statutes.

According to an excerpt from a list of members on March 21, 2013, Kalbitz only mentioned the Young Union and the CSU as former party memberships. The application for membership, however, asked new members to disclose their previous affiliation in extremist organizations and to ensure that they did not belong to any right-wing extremist or xenophobic organization.

With this, the dispute over the personnel gets new nourishment. Kalbitz’s AfD membership was canceled ten days ago at the instigation of party leader Meuthen with the support of a slim majority of the federal executive board. This was opposed by the top of the parliamentary group and Meuthen’s co-chair Tino Chrupalla. The expulsion was understood as a declaration of war by the forces of the “Wing” current, which had since been dissolved. Meuthen and other board members cited, among other things, that Kalbitz had not indicated his membership with the Republicans when joining the AfD. Kalbitz is said to have been a member for one year from the end of 1993. Because the Republicans were at times classified as extremists, he should have indicated this.

Meanwhile, the unrest in the AfD is growing. There is talk of a “break” in two camps in the faction of the AfD, the largest opposition party in the Bundestag. Because part of the leadership is for Kalbitz to remain and another part is there, cooperation between the two sides is hardly possible anymore, it said.

Party leader Meuthen confirmed his decision on Tuesday. The cancellation of membership was compulsory, according to him. He accuses Kalbitz of not concealing membership in the right-wing extremist group HDJ, but also criticizes: “Andreas Kalbitz has never distanced himself from his extremist connections.”

Party leader Meuthen is preparing for a lengthy lawsuit

With a view to the unrest in the party, Meuthen is counting on the time factor and hopes that the waves will level off, although the party leader also expects a lengthy legal dispute with Kalbitz. “We have decided, and that is now the case,” he said. “The legal process is of course open to Mr. Kalbitz.” With regard to the possible legal dispute, the party leader says: “It will probably take longer.” He assumes that “there will be some time in the country.” The supporters of a separation from Kalbitz are apparently betting that loyalty to him will also decrease in the East German AfD state associations. “At the moment the excitement is high,” said Meuthen. “That will calm down. Sometimes you have to let a story sag.”

This should also apply to the party executive, who is currently deeply divided. Three of the most important members of the top feel duped by Meuthen: his co-chair Tino Chrupalla and the chairs of the parliamentary group Alice Weidel and Alexander Gauland. One is irreconcilable, but Chairman Meuthen, after his temporary triumph in the yet unfinished Kalbitz case, has an interest in minimizing the conflict. “There will be no showdown in the party leadership,” he believes. “We are only divided on one question.” Meuthen critics in the AfD say that his only concern is to secure his power and to position himself for an application as a top candidate for the Bundestag election next year. Meuthen only says that he is considering a candidacy. “I will decide at the end of summer whether I want to run for the Bundestag. But that is still open for me.”

.