Not a german nor do i speak german, so my having opinions is a bit ridiculous, but being the junior partner in a coalition is usually bad for a party's fortune in the next election. FDP's previous stay in government (2009-2013) resulted in not passing the electoral threshold and thus being shut out of parliament in the subsequent election. Although this election bucked the trend, over the years SPD also did not profit being the junior partner. FDP is very exposed in a traffic light coalition - an Israeli solution to this problem would make Lindner the Kanzler...

Agree on the boon of fragmentation - having 2 center left parties and 2 center right parties allows protest votes to remain in the center.

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Back in 2017, the FDP refused to enter what was seen as the only government option - CDU-FDP-Greens. It's thought that the intention was forcing a snap election and hoping for a CDU-FDP majority.

The CDU's weakness has been attributed to Laschet being a poor choice for lead candidate, so a snap election can potentially benefit both the CDU and FDP, whose platforms largely overlap.

Snap elections aren't endorsed in the constitution as result of Weimar instability. Still, I wouldn't rule out one being held.

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