After months of an awkward coalition in the German State of Hesse, between the SPD and the conservatives, the SPD has voted to throw their lot in with the Greens and a far left party instead.
It could see the political influence of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU party sidelined in yet another German state.
The Hesse plan was put forward by SPD leader Andrea Ypsilanti but wholeheartedly supported by her party.
“I have spoken with the President of the SPD about our plan,” said Ms Ypsilanti. “He said that we must act responsibly, but that it is a regional decision and not a national one. I told him that I am convinced that the success of this plan will not damage any relations for the national party, but to the contrary, it will give it a new boost.”
Many in the SPD oppose even a loose cooperation with the left, which includes many ex-communists. But that was not reflected in this regional vote.
It means acting Premier in Hesse, Roland Koch of the CDU, would be left out in the cold.
The Greens have already voted in favour of supporting a coalition with the SPD with voting support from the left. The left party has too.
Ypsilanti’s SPD could muster the support of 56 members of the 100-seat regional parliament.