At the beginning of 2020, a Berliner gave the AfD money as a contribution "for more democracy". A shitstorm erupts over him. Two years later, he sued for the donation to be handed over - again followed by threats. Now he's backing down.
It was not even a month ago that the Berlin entrepreneur Christian Krawinkel announced that if necessary he would go to the Federal Constitutional Court to get his 100,000 euro donation for the AfD Thuringia back. The fact that he was serious was shown by the fact that he commissioned Berlin's top lawyer Oliver Moser with the lawsuit. The financial contribution to the AfD was "a serious mistake", explained Krawinkel at the time. The complaint sent out in mid-March stated that the donor and AfD had agreed to use the money “exclusively and without alternative to promote democracy”. Krawinkel's order was "obviously not implemented", which is why the AfD had to repay the amount - which the party refused.
In fact, experts gave the lawsuit no chance. Krawinkel himself spoke of a high risk of losing the legal dispute. But just a few weeks ago, he was determined to go through with it. His declared goal was to find out what the party had actually done with the money and whether it had actually been used to promote democracy. "It's important that accountability is given. We generally need more clarity here." Therefore he is ready to go to Karlsruhe.
Now Krawinkel, who earned millions with real estate, is backing down. He had his attorney withdraw the lawsuit. His client was "exposed to massive threats and insults in the digital media due to public reporting on the local proceedings," according to the law firm's letter, which is available to ntv.de. "In order to protect his family and himself, our client is unable to maintain this situation." In addition, reactions in the public and in the AfD showed no willingness to recognize Krawinkel's "fundamental goal, namely the promotion of democracy".
When asked, the entrepreneur said: "First I was mobbed and insulted because I donated 100,000 euros to the AfD. Then I sued the AfD to make my position clear that I consider the party to be a right-wing extremist club of the worst kind "Now I'm being threatened and insulted again. We all have to ask ourselves how our democracy and society should go."
After the donation became known two and a half years ago, the Berliner was described as a “brown construction tycoon” or “brown real estate shark” and was attacked on social media for days. When the Berliner made his complaint public this spring and sharply distanced himself from the AfD, he was again ridiculed on the Internet and via e-mails. Krawinkel had called the development of the AfD "a disgrace". He told "Welt" in mid-July that the last moderate politician had left the organization when ex-AfD leader Jörg Meuthen left the party. "The captain left the ship, the rats stayed."
The fact that the horror in other parties and their supporters about Krawinkel's donation from February 2020 was particularly great also had to do with the fact that it went to the Thuringian state association, which is led by the right-wing radical Björn Höcke. The fact that Krawinkel wanted his financial contribution to be understood as a contribution "to more democracy in the country" also caused outrage. He made direct reference to the election and resignation of FDP politician Thomas Kemmerich as Prime Minister of Thuringia. He was hoisted into office in February 2020 with the votes of the AfD. After severe criticism from the then Chancellor Angela Merkel and FDP leader Christian Lindner, he gave it up again 24 hours later.