Toolbox and position paper

By Christian BlockLex KlerenMisch Pautsch Switch to German for original article

In the run-up to local elections, all parties publish general election programmes. But what is their purpose, who is targeted and what do they really contain?

All of them have one. Some are more comprehensive than others or are aimed at a specific audience. We are talking about the framework election programmes that the parties have drawn up in the run-up to the municipal elections on June 11. But what is the point? After all, one could argue that problems and challenges such as parking facilities, school infrastructure or 30 speed limit zones are specific to each municipality.

Not surprisingly, most parties ascribe a dual purpose to their framework strategy. In the words of LSAP, this is, on the one hand, to provide, as the term implies, "a 'framework' for sections to put forward their local ideas". In this way, the party wants to "set the broad lines". This applies above all to issues that arise in all municipalities in the country, such as housing or mobility. However, all parties also agree that the respective sections always address local-specific problems when formulating their election promises.

On the other hand, the manifestos are also addressed to the interested public. As LSAP party manager Ben Streff puts it, "we believe and hope that a number of citizens beyond the municipal boundaries will want to find out what LSAP stands for on a national scale". The Pirates justify their cornerstone programme with a "right to information, to transparency and also from future citizen participation, " because a framework programme was aimed at all inhabitants of a country, not just those eligible to vote.

The responses of the parties also give an insight into the extent to which the party base is involved in the elaboration of the proposals. According to Marc Baum, the National Coordination (Nako), the highest party body at déi Lénk, has set up a "working group with representatives from all sections" to draft the framework election programme. Déi gréng and DP, to pick two examples, have taken a similar path. In the case of the Greens, a first draft was prepared in workshops with the party's municipal representatives, which was revised by the Executive Committee and sent to the members in the run-up to a congress. In the case of the Liberals, members were able to participate in thematic workshops as part of a "FutureLab" programme. adr points for the authorship of its document solely to the Executive and National Committees, where, in addition to MPs, district presidents and adr youth organisation are represented, among others. At CSV, the National Council had "discussed and adopted" the Framework Election Programme. The party's national and district executive committees, the national and European deputies as well as representatives of the various organisations are represented in this body, all in all around 160 party members.

CSV stands out from the crowd. The General Secretary of the Christian Social Party, Stéphanie Weydert, confirmed to Journal what can be read on the website: The party sees the framework programme above all as "a kind of toolbox of ideas" for the local sections, "reflecting the national context with our positions with concrete proposals that one can implement in one's community". The "programme elements", summarised on 18 pages, are only available in Luxembourgish.

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