Norbert Walter-Borjans advises against renunciation of SPD chancellor candidature

Wednesday, 06.11.2019
12:10 clock

Norbert Walter-Borjans, candidate for the post of SPD leader, advises his party against setting up a chancellor candidate in its present constitution. "I think I would first advertise that we set up a top candidate," said Walter Borjans in a SPIEGEL debate of the two remaining teams in the race for the SPD presidency. (The whole conversation can be found from 16 clock on


He does not believe "that at the moment we would be at this point to set up a chancellor candidate," said the former NRW Finance Minister. He touches an inner party taboo. So far, it was part of the self-understanding of the Social Democrats, with an official chancellor candidate as well as the Union to substantiate the claim to make the head of government. By contrast, smaller parties such as the Greens, the FDP and the Left traditionally only compete with top candidates.

Vote # 119 SPD runoff election: finally confrontation?

Walter Borjans also hinted that under him as SPD boss his competitor Olaf Scholz little chance of the chancellor candidate should the party in the end but such a candidacy. If he and Saskia Esken chaired, one would have to ask the question: "Is there an alternative to who believes it to be, Olaf, and what could that look like?" Said the 67-year-old Social Democrat: "At least I would say that, unlike many, this party has a lot of highly qualified people to talk about together. "

  There are "a lot of ways to talk about". It was about how one could represent a reorientation of the SPD "also personell credible".


When asked about his own ambitions, Walter-Borjans said that "one of the presidents would not necessarily have to be number one in the next election campaign, but future party leaders should be able to have a say". The decision should not "run past the chairman" run.

  In the recorded conversation on Monday Walter-Borjans joined with his tandem partner, the Member of Parliament Saskia Esken, against the other before the runoff election remaining team of candidates from Federal Finance Minister Olaf Scholz and the Brandenburg Klara Geywitz. It was the first clash of this kind since the result of the first round of the membership decision had been announced on the previous Saturday.

The candidate duel: Scholz, Geywitz vs. Walter Borjans, Esken – from 16 clock on

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