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Wednesday, August 17, 2022

A summit and many cross shots

Are the reports about Karl Nehammer’s fee more than
Grumbling about the looming election defeats? Not for now, say insiders.

Actually it should have been an auspicious August Monday for Karl Nehammer should be: For the afternoon, the Chancellor invited a group of high-ranking politicians to discuss what is probably the greatest of all simultaneous crises, the energy shortage. The ÖVP leader brought together key players in his government, high-ranking opposition politicians and representatives of the social partners. The Vienna state government was also present as the current presidency of the state governors’ conference. At this meeting of the extra-curricularly expanded crisis cabinet, one wanted, such as Vice Chancellor Werner Kogler (Greens) had declared in advance to discuss how to prepare for the winter: “How long and how much Russian gas will be delivered to Europe is still uncertain,” said Kogler. Concrete measures were not expected, but “a common information stand” should be developed, as it was said, and the government’s planned electricity price brake was also on the agenda.

But just the night before Nehammer was supposed to make his appearance as the top crisis manager, the next cross shots were fired in his direction – from his own ranks. What happened? Amazingly close in time, namely within a few minutes, around midnight, “OE24” and “Heute” put anonymous reports online, according to which Nehammer’s transfer, according to “high-ranking ÖVP politicians” and “strategists”, was just a matter of time, in the ÖVP has long had a “secret plan” for the successor. The ÖVP “saws on the chair” of its boss, who was elected only two and a half months ago, stood there, with references to the erratic quarantine and the weak poll results of the Chancellor Party, which is sometimes even rated third behind the FPÖ. “Der Standard” also reported on the allegedly planned replacement of the third ÖVP politician who moved into the chancellor’s office during this period.

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