After consulting with all the seat-winning party leaders, per constitutional procedure, invited the leader of the biggest winner to become the “formateur,” i.e., the one to form the next government.
“This is obviously a great honour and a great responsibility, as it involves preparing the future of this country. I have accepted this mission,” said , whose CSV won 21 seats in the election, after leaving the palace on Monday. That evening, Frieden received the approval of his national committee to begin discussions with the DP. All points on the CSV programme will be discussed, with a view to finding common ground.
Next in the procedure will be the formation of two delegations, one CSV and one DP. Frieden, as the “formateur,” will not be included.
The CSV has decided not to start the same procedure with the LSAP, , while talks continue with the DP, although Frieden has met with his LSAP counterpart on several occasions.
As early as the evening of election day itself, a CSV-DP coalition seemed to be in the cards. (DP) reported believing that his party had won the elections, outgoing prime minister (DP) having beaten Frieden by a comfortable margin. Bettel, for his part, stated on Sunday evening that “the function itself [i.e., being PM] has always been something of an extra… what’s important is the policy I can make over the next five years.”
He added: “It was an honour to be prime minister for ten years. If I can continue for another five years, I’ll be delighted. If I have to do something else, I’ll do something else.”
Where might Bettel land?
In a CSV-DP coalition, what role might Bettel take on? One possibility is minister of foreign affairs, ending the almost 20-year stint of (LSAP) in that office. Another is economy minister, considering his background and experience with entrepreneurs on a global level. Or a new “super minister” position in the housing ministry. Or digitalisation minister, a role he has held since that ministry’s creation in 2018.
On Sunday evening, Frieden named two priorities for the discussions with the CSV’s potential coalition partners: content and depth. In other words, he doesn’t want a superficial alliance. Objectively speaking, looking at the programmes of the two parties, the DP probably aligns with Frieden’s party more than the LSAP does.
Earlier on Sunday, the LSAP set up its own national committee. Following their meeting with the grand duke, party representatives and stated that the LSAP should be the junior party together with the CSV. But as of Sunday afternoon, they said, nobody from the CSV had called them to discuss it.
This article in Paperjam. It has been translated and edited for Delano.