During the 2017 federal election campaign, a campaign by the AfD faction on a video screen caused a stir. The political opponent was corrupted. It was paid for from faction funds. The state parliament wants the money back.
Stuttgart (dpa/lsw) - The Stuttgart Administrative Court is today hearing the lawsuit brought by the AfD parliamentary group for the repayment of 11,241.53 euros to the state parliament. Parliament is demanding the amount back because it is said to have been illegally used by the party for election advertising in the 2017 federal election campaign. It was initially unclear whether a decision would be announced on Thursday.
The funds of the parliamentary groups come from taxpayers' money. In principle, they may not be used for party purposes, i.e. not for election advertising. AfD parliamentary group leader Bernd Gögel again rejected the accusation of inadmissible campaign advertising. "Anyone who wants to reduce factions to a parliamentary function of public relations advocates weakening the opposition to the government factions, which leads to preference for the latter." In this respect, it is imperative for the AfD that opposition factions must be able to represent their positions in the same way as the government factions. "This also applies to federal political issues - especially since the competences of the state and federal government are intertwined via the Bundesrat."
The process has dragged on for years. A spokesman for the state parliament had stated in the past that the recovery amount would not expire. Above all, it is about a campaign that the AfD showed on a video screen on the Pragsattel in Stuttgart. For example, the then Federal Minister of Justice Heiko Maas (SPD) was mocked as the character Gollum from the fantasy classic "Lord of the Rings". State President Muhterem Aras (Greens) had rated this campaign as a violation of the parliamentary group law.