The decision on the new mayor of Frankfurt will be made in a runoff election at the end of March. In the first ballot on Sunday, none of the candidates achieved the required absolute majority. According to the provisional result, Uwe Becker (CDU) received the most votes with 34.5 percent, followed by Mike Josef (SPD) with 24.0 percent. Both candidates are going into the runoff on March 26th.
"The result motivates for the coming weeks," said Becker. "Now it's about a real new beginning." His competitor Josef emphasized: "Our goal was to get into the runoff election. That's a huge success. That's the first step and the second step is in three weeks."
Manuela Rottmann, who ran as a candidate for the Greens and won the last local election in Frankfurt, only came third with 21.3 percent. "If only two get into the runoff, one has to stay out," said Rottmann. Still, she wasn't disappointed. Contrary to all prophecies of doom, the Greens had achieved a very good result.
With a total of 20 candidates, more took part this time than ever before in the Main metropolis. Due to this high number, a runoff election was already considered likely. The final result of the first ballot is to be announced next Thursday.
Around 509,000 people were entitled to vote. Voter turnout was 40.4 percent, higher than five years ago. In the last mayoral election in 2018, the turnout in the first round was 37.6 percent, in the run-off it fell to 30.2 percent.
Both the 53-year-old Becker and the 40-year-old Josef have extensive experience in city politics: Josef is the acting head of planning, Becker was, among other things, treasurer and mayor in Frankfurt. During the election campaign, the CDU candidate had put the issue of security in the foreground, Josef had attracted attention with his demand for an additional billion for the construction and renovation of schools.
According to their board, the Greens want to decide this Monday whether and if so, for whom they want to make an election recommendation. At the same time, your district board spokesman referred to the coalition in which the Greens currently govern the city - and in which the SPD - as well as the FDP and Volt - are represented, but not the CDU.
There were also independent candidates, including tram driver Peter Wirth, known as "Bahnbabo", who came fourth with 5.1 percent.
The former SPD mayor Peter Feldmann was voted out in November in a procedure that was unprecedented for Frankfurt. Because of the affair about the workers' welfare (Awo) and various gaffes, he had gambled away his trust. Shortly thereafter, the 64-year-old was fined for accepting advantages in the Awo affair. The verdict is not yet legally binding.
The Frankfurt SPD - headed by Mike Josef - had also distanced itself from Feldmann. Since Feldmann's deselection, business has been managed by his deputy, Green Party politician Nargess Eskandari-Grünberg. The usual term of office for a Mayor in Frankfurt is six years.
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