That was close: A majority of 52.24 percent of FDP members voted for the party to remain in the traffic light coalition. But that doesn't mean party leader Christian Lindner's problems are over. Before the party's traditional Epiphany meeting on January 6th, it is still unclear whether and how the measures agreed by the traffic light leaders to consolidate the budget will be implemented. The public dispute over agricultural diesel, sanctions for recipients of citizens' benefit and compliance with the debt brake continues.
In any case, the image of FDP leader Christian Lindner has suffered massively in the past few months. As a Forsa survey for stern showed, only 21 percent of Germans still consider him trustworthy. This is a decrease of six percentage points compared to the low value from April 2023. These are crucial weeks for the finance minister.
In the characteristics profile that Forsa regularly compiles for top politicians on behalf of stern, another value for Lindner is also very poor: just 20 percent of citizens have the impression that the finance minister “knows what moves people”. A decrease of four percentage points compared to April. Lindner loses the most when it comes to two hard criteria: Only 31 percent of Germans consider him to be a strong leader (minus 12 percentage points) and only 37 percent consider him competent (minus 10 percentage points). The FDP leader only achieved an absolute majority in one dimension: 51 percent think that he speaks comprehensibly (minus 8 percentage points). 33 percent find the politician likeable (minus 4 percentage points).
The Germans who would currently vote for the FDP rate Lindner somewhat more positively: 46 percent say he is close to the citizens. It is interesting to compare this with the larger group of those who voted for the Liberals in the last federal election. Of them, only 32 percent say that Lindner knows what motivates people.
The data was collected by the market and opinion research institute forsa for stern and RTL Deutschland on December 19th and 20th, 2023. Database: 1006 respondents. Statistical margin of error: /- 3 percentage points