The SVP National Councilor Lars Guggisberg (43) from Bern is also out of the race for the SVP Presidium. “For me, a candidacy is currently out of the question,” he says to BLICK.
Guggisberg was recently treated as a “secret favorite” by the news portal “Watson”. He has only been in the federal parliament for six months. Accordingly, the power vacuum at the head of the party comes too early for the financial politician – even if the position is fundamentally appealing to him. “I do not rule out that I will run for the presidium in a few years,” he says.
Children’s room in front of the hall
For now, however, the Bernese wants to concentrate entirely on his work as a financial politician and lawyer. And on his role as a father. “The main reason for my cancellation is my family situation.” Guggisberg has two children aged nine and ten. The time-consuming and nerve-wracking post of the party leader was not in there.
Children’s room in front of the hall. What was laughed at in the right-wing party a few years ago seems to be common among younger SVP politicians today. Both the Schwyz National Councilor Marcel Dettling (39), who was considered a preferred candidate by many, and the Solothurn National Councilor Christian Imark (38) rejected the party because of their family duties.
National Councilor Martina Bircher (36) recently came into the same horn. “The family comes first for me,” she said in a glance. “The SVP Presidium would be too time-consuming to be able to reconcile the two.”
Cancellations are hailing
And so the candidate carousel continues to turn – at least in the media. Candidates are launched in the public eye in order to withdraw from the race a short time later. This is good for the party, which is able to present half its faction in the shop window.
But the choice of serious candidacies at the largest Swiss party is actually meager: four weeks before the election, Andreas Glarner (57) and Alfred Heer (59) have officially registered two candidates with the SVP Finding Commission. What they have in common is that they do not trigger enthusiasm within the party. The fact that the search committee is desperately looking for alternatives speaks volumes.
Glarner provokes too often for many. He recently caused outrage when he denounced the foreign names of Aldi apprentices. The former Zurich cantonal president Heer, on the other hand, is accused of politicizing too little on the line of SVP overfather Christoph Blocher (79) – which has traditionally been poorly received by the party.
Is there anyone else coming?
The question remains: wars that? Or is someone coming? Some SVP representatives assume that the candidacies offered are more of a diversion and that the party leadership still has an ace up its sleeve. For example, SVP National Councilor Imark says: “I can well imagine that a promising name will appear shortly before the election on August 22nd.”
But that could also be wishful thinking. Because who should suddenly impose himself? During the corona crisis, a close circle led by party leader Thomas Aeschi (41), Vice President Magdalena Martullo-Blocher (50) and Vice President Thomas Matter (54) and the new chief of staff Franz Gruter (56) – and SVP leader Albert Rosti (52) increasingly replaced.
The circle of power will also be involved in filling the executive post. As a member of the search committee, however, Aeschi is unlikely to be considered for the presidium. And from the perspective of many, Matter is unsuitable as a banker and a heir to the millions to shape the image of the party.
Gruter, on the other hand, does a lot of bones as a chief of staff who moves through the cantonal sections, but has already refused a request from the finding committee. “As chief of staff, I want to take the pressure off the future president,” says Gruter. “In addition to my professional activity as an entrepreneur, the presidency would be too time-consuming.”
Can a previous leader be persuaded?
The search commission is said to be so desperate that it even asked the former SVP National Council and former parliamentary leader Adrian Amstutz (66), reports «Nau». In fact, despite his resignation from parliament, the Bernese repeatedly appears in public for the SVP. But to BLICK he says very clearly: “No, the Presidium is out of the question for me.”
Even Toni Brunner’s name (45) is brought into play. But even the mention of Rosti’s predecessor as party president shows the misery of the SVP rather than that a comeback is seriously imminent. After all, the former St. Gallen National Council is just as little in the federal parliament as Amstutz. Even with a chief of staff like National Councilor Gruter at his side, it seems imperative that the SVP president sit in parliament.