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November 20, 2019

A dramatic loss of confidence in government and state in Germany

We are generally sceptical about survey-based intelligence, from opinion polls to confidence indicators. Here is one we find interesting, though. The German Allensback institute reports of a landslide fall in political confidence during the two years of the latest grand coalition. The number of citizens who regard the stability of the government as a strength of the country has fallen from 49% to 26%. And the number of people who regard the country itself as stable is down from 81% to 57%. 

Frustration is directed at both coalition parties. Even the normally placid CDU/CSU supporters are concerned about what they perceive as a leadership vacuum. Support for the grand coalition has fallen to an all time low of 19%. We are living in the tail end of the grand coalition period, prolonged by both parties' tactical reluctance to pull the plug. This reluctance acts against the long-term interest of each of them.

The important point that comes out of the survey is that this is not only a reflection of the government as such, but of the state. This is the genuinely new finding. The Germans are becoming more sceptical about the ability of the state to act. 

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