Gauland speaks of “tricks” in afd debacle in saxony

Gauland speaks of 'tricks' in afd debacle in saxony

The afd sees itself as a victim because the bottom two-thirds of its list of candidates for the saxon state election was declared invalid.

Party leader alexander gauland accused the saxon state election committee of trying to keep the afd down with formal trickery. "The opposition party, which is to become the strongest party in saxony, is to be disempowered from its electoral victory, so to speak, with tricks," gauland said in front of around 800 supporters of the right-wing nationalist "wing" of his party in leinefelde in thuringia. "We will never allow that to happen."

The saxon afd only has a chance of entering the state parliament with more than 18 deputies via direct mandates in the 60 electoral districts. After the decision of the state election committee, the afd can run in the election on 1. September with only 18 candidates instead of 61. Due to formal deficiencies in the list, the committee had declared the list invalid with regard to places 19 to 61.

According to polls, the afd in saxony can hope for 30 seats in the state parliament. Legal action against the committee’s decision was only possible for the afd after the election. Representatives of the parties sit on the electoral committee according to their results in the 2014 state election.

The non-admission of candidates on the back of the list should "deprive a democratic party of the opportunity to become the strongest party in saxony," said gauland. He called out to the participants of the meeting: "dear friends, we will stand up against this."

The afd european deputy christine anderson called on all afd mandate holders and state executive committees to travel to saxony in the coming weeks for the election campaign. The hessian politician, by her own admission the glowing supporter of thuringian afd state leader and party lawyer bjorn hocke, promoted a campaign for more afd direct mandates in saxony. "This is exactly the point where we as afd can prove what we are capable of."

In polls, the afd is in a neck-and-neck race with the CDU in saxony for the position of strongest force. The decision could result in the afd being represented by only 18 candidates after the state elections on 1. September cannot exercise all mandates to which it is entitled according to the result. A top politician of the saxon afd said he hoped for a solidarity effect and could imagine that some voters would now vote for the afd all the more.

The afd had drawn up its list in two meetings in february and march with different meeting leaders and separate election procedures. By law, however, all candidates must have the opportunity to present themselves and their program to all voters on the state list and to participate in both party congresses.

Party law expert martin morlok told the redaktionsnetzwerk deutschland: "the electoral law must be handled formally in order to prevent manipulations."The basis of democracy must be strictly observed here. He recalled the annulment of the 1993 hamburg state elections by the state’s constitutional court – at that time, the issue was violations by the CDU in its nomination of candidates.

When asked who was responsible for the mistake, the afd was initially silent. Internally, two assembly leaders from north rhine-westphalia were at least partly to blame. "We as afd saxony have not made any formal mistakes," said saxony state chairman jorg urban in leinefelde. He spoke of "political willfulness" and promised his party friends: "we will win more direct mandates in saxony than we have ever been able to acquire through second votes."Urban praised the right-wing wing and said that the afd is currently only in such a good position "because you have remained steadfast".

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