After the Union, the traffic light is now pushing to curtail former Chancellor Schröder’s special rights. But the justifications of the SPD, Greens and FDP differ from the arguments of the opposition.

SPD, Greens and FDP drastically cut the special rights of former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder: The SPD politician is to lose his office and his employees.

The remaining staff should handle the tasks of the office and then take on other tasks, according to the application by the traffic light coalition for the budget committee, which is to be decided on Thursday. Several media had previously reported about it. Schröder should be allowed to keep his pension and personal security.

The coalition does not go quite as far as the Union, which also wants to cut Schröder’s pension because of his contacts with Russia. Schröder harmed the international reputation of Germany, the Union had justified this. Despite the war in Ukraine, he has still not distanced himself from Russian President Vladimir Putin and is also sticking to his posts in various Russian energy companies.

Position on Russia and Putin unofficial reason

The traffic light coalition does not officially justify the removal of Schröder’s privileges with his attitude towards Russia and Putin. That should make the decision less vulnerable. Instead, they call on the federal government to ensure that the official appointments of former chancellors “take place in accordance with the ongoing obligations from the office and are not related to status”. It should be noted that Schröder no longer accepts any obligations from his time as Chancellor. This also sets standards for ex-Chancellor Angela Merkel, for example.

Schröder was Chancellor from 1998 to 2005. He then took on tasks for the pipeline company Nord Stream, Russia’s Gazprom and the energy company Rosneft, among others. Because he did not distance himself from this after the beginning of the war, the SPD leadership asked him to leave the party. There are also motions for expulsion from the party.