"Bad Horse Trade": opposition quarrels with ground rent

              Monday, November 11, 2019

              For months Union and SPD are struggling for a compromise on basic pensions. On Sunday, the governing parties announce the long-awaited breakthrough. The opposition does not go far enough for the opposition – business associations see the problem elsewhere.
              The Basic Pact compromise of the Grand Coalition is met with strong skepticism from the opposition. The party leaders of the Greens and the Left, Annalena Baerbock and Katja Kipping, all agreed in Berlin that they were missing a chance, even if the decisions would bring improvements for some of them. FDP General Secretary Linda Teuteberg criticized a "bad horse-trading", which was also "frivolously financed ".Baerbock welcomed in principle that there is now a decision for the basic pension, but demanded that this should be paid from 30 contribution years and not as planned by Union and SPD from 35 years. In addition, the Greens chairman insisted on an overall higher pension level and "a pension insurance in which all pay" and already "contains a safe protection against poverty". Kipping criticized the foreseen by the coalition income test as a prerequisite for the receipt of basic pension. Thus, such an examination would be introduced as a new instrument in the statutory pension insurance. Although the basic pension is "an improvement for a few people", it lags far behind what was required. "Teuteberg complained that some would receive the basic pension they did not need at all, and on the other hand, without 35 years of contributions" Rust fall ". The coalition decisions meant "enormous bureaucracy and still high costs for taxpayers and contributors". At the same time, the financial transaction tax provided for as counter-financing is uncertain. According to Teuteberg, it would be more sensible to "purposely combat old-age poverty" and also to consider the financial circumstances. Employers warn union against further concessions Among the critics of the ground rent compromise, business associations also intervened. The president of the Federal Association of Small and Medium Sized Enterprises, Mario Ohoven, said: "The Basic Rent of the Grand Coalition means the dam failure in the pension insurance: away from the wage bill, to more and more non-contributory benefits, which are financed by tax credits." Ohoven said he think so It is extremely worrying to impose the financing of more and more social benefits on the taxpayer in the face of the impending recession. Germany must remain competitive as a location especially in times of downturn. "In addition, social security contributions must not exceed the 40 percent mark, and the basic pension is not an appropriate means of combating old-age poverty." In order to stabilize performance despite demographic change, a flexible retirement age and incentives for additional earning in old age are needed, said Ohoven. "In the next ten years, the baby boomers will retire, which is why a fundamental reform of pension insurance is needed, and Groko is obviously lacking in strength." Employer President Ingo Kramer warned the union after the basic pension agreement against further concessions to the SPD , "The Union must someday also endure the conflict with the SPD and may not only get involved therefore more in social democratic politics, because otherwise the coalition break threatens," said Kramer the "Handelsblatt". Despite the basic pensions agreement, the employer president sees the continuation of the coalition in the balance: "The probability is 50 percent or more that the government changes sometime between November and February, that we get a new coalition, a minority government or new elections." Three dissenting votes in the CDU executive boardAlso in the federal government itself, the agreement met with a shared echo. Although the CDU presidium unanimously agreed to the coalition compromise. According to party leader Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, however, there were three dissenting votes in the executive committee, among them those of JU leader Tilman Kuban and those of the Chairman of the Union-Mittelstandsvereinigung (MIT), Carsten Linnemann. On the other hand, Kramp-Karrenbauer emphasized that a "whole series" of MIT members on the board agreed to the agreement. The CSU presidium had unanimously voted in favor of the compromise, according to party leader Markus Söder. "The compromise is fair and balanced," Söder wrote on Twitter. For his party, the decided comprehensive income test is important. In addition, the economy will be strengthened. "GroKo has taken a big step towards the future," Söder continued. Also the SPD presidium unanimously submitted itself after the coalition compromise. Acting party leader Malu Dreyer spoke of a "socio-political milestone" and emphasized: "We are very happy that we were able to set a new standard with it".

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