May 2, 2023
Berlin is about to get conservative. The Christian Democrats have taken control of our once lefty, greeny, progressive and mismanaged city. The new CDU mayor is Kai Wegner, and he’s already off to a bad start. Berlin's parliament took an unprecedented three rounds of voting to elect him, despite his coalition having a majority. That means some within his own ranks aren't happy with him in power, and could cause trouble by refusing to pass legislation.
Was the New Election Justified?
How did the CDU come to power? They won 28.2% of the vote in the February 2023 re-election. They invited the SPD (which won 18.4% of votes) to join in a coalition. Together the CDU and SPD have 46.6% of votes and 82 of 159 seats in parliament. But the previous coalition of SPD, Greens (18.4%) and die Linke (12.2%) together had 49% of votes and taken 90 seats. Put simply, the old R2G (or G2R) coalition could have continued, and would have represented more voters.
Why did the 2023 election happen at all? Joel read the court decision which overturned the previous 2021 'marathon' election and found few facts to support the claim that it was terminally flawed. You can read the verdict for yourself here: https://gesetze.berlin.de/bsbe/document/KVRE008452215
Joel's take: The 2021 election shouldn't have been re-run, and the 2023 coalition isn't democratically supported.
How Berlin is Becoming a Psychedelics Hotspot
Several major medical trials are underway at Berlin's Charite hospital using psilocybin and MDMA to treating depression and PTSD. And plenty of Berliners are conducting their own experiments with micro-dosing. Our guest is Anne Philippi, host of The New Health Club podcast, which dives into the emerging field of psychedelic therapy. Listen to her show on Apple Podcasts here.
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This episode was recorded live at Selina Mitte: https://www.selina.com/germany/berlin-mitte/
Hosts: Joel Dullroy, Izzy Choksey, Dan Stern. Producers: Anne-Marie Harrison, Sebastian Filip.
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