January 04, 2019
Will the AfD become the Dexit party?
What are the AfD's strategic options now that net immigration is no longer the big political issue in Germany? Wolfgang Kubiki, a leading German liberal, made the confident prediction that the AfD has peaked for that reason. We believe this forecast is wrong for two reasons. First, the immigrants are still there. They are visible in every part of the country, and the problems have not been solved. Secondly, we believe that Kubiki's forecast takes too complacent a view on the AfD’s strategic options after the CDU leadership elections, which left a wide gap open on the political right.
As Die Welt reports, the party’s draft manifesto for this year’s European election foresees a German exit from the EU - Dexit - in 2024, to coincide with the end of the legislative term of the newly elected European Parliament. The AfD wants to make Dexit conditional on whether the EU can change itself during that period in the way the AfD wants - essentially by turning itself into a club of nation states.
This won’t happen, of course. There is no support for a Dexit in the country at large, but in the German political marketplace there is clearly room for a Dexit party. This is especially so after the recent leadership elections in the CDU, which firmly rooted the party in the political centre. The Dexit view has strong support among AfD members, but not everybody favours the most radical option of a complete and unilateral withdrawal.
The AfD will discuss its election strategy at a party conference in Saxony next week.