The Upper Austrian SPÖ wants to become more edgy and also rethink its relationship with the trade unions – at least that recommends an external analysis of its state election campaign. A consequence of this should also be smaller, more powerful bodies. A timetable for reforms is to be presented by February. It is also completely open who should lead the party in the next state election in 2027.
The SPÖ missed its goals in the state elections last autumn. With 18.58 percent, she was only able to make up 0.21 percentage points of the mega-defeat in 2015. The second place and the targeted second regional council was not achieved, and the SPÖ had to surrender its core social competence to the ÖVP. “We are not satisfied with the election result,” said party chairman Birgit Gerstorfer in a press conference after a party retreat on Wednesday.
As a consequence – as already after the 2009 and 2015 elections – a renewal process was announced, which this time began with an analysis by three German experts. Political advisor Jana Faus, journalist Horand Knaup and former SPD politician Michael Rüter, who have already analyzed the 2017 election campaign for the German Social Democrats, which was not exactly a success, have now also done the same for their Upper Austrian comrades.
In order to be able to follow in the footsteps of the SPD, which has meanwhile risen to become the Chancellor’s party, when it comes to election results, the party has to become more edgy and move away from its “long tradition of not offending”. Even a holy cow is tackled: the trade unions. These are undoubtedly important for social democracy, but always “committed to a specific clientele”, often not very compromise-oriented and with a “tendency to preserve vested rights”, it says in the paper. The fact that certain list places are always reserved for trade unionists must at least be subject to discussion, according to the council.
In addition, the party’s experts also advise looking at the campaigns of successful red mayors in the country, downsizing the committees – the state party executive consists of 80 members – and thinking about the next top candidate in good time. Gerstorfer (58) will probably no longer compete in 2027. (APA / red)