Traffic light conversation at “Markus Lanz” | Heil (SPD) for Zoff: “It’s not my style”

Traffic lights crackle, especially when it comes to the energy crisis. Hubertus Heil spoke with Lanz about the collaboration at the last cabinet retreat.

Exploding energy prices, inflation and debt containment: On Wednesday evening, Markus Lanz spoke to his guests about the real options available to politicians to socially mitigate the energy crisis.

Guests, Friends

  • Hubertus Heil, Federal Minister of Labor and Social Affairs (SPD)
  • Monika Schnitzer, economist
  • Michael Bröcker, editor-in-chief of Media Pioneer.

Federal Labor Minister Hubertus Heil came straight from the cabinet room to the studio. After a long struggle, the traffic lights at Meseberg Castle had agreed, among other things, on a third relief package, the content of which is expected to be decided at the weekend.

The cooperation between the coalition partners was “very serious and also very constructive”, Heil bei Lanz reported to the conference.


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When asked about the coalition partners’ public “taunts” against each other in the run-up to the meeting – for example by SPD leader Lars Klingbeil against Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck – Heil made it clear: “It’s not my style that we we rob each. other.”

Heil: “It has to improve now”

The SPD man also admitted that not everyone took it that way: “It has to get better now,” says Heil, “that goes for everyone in the coalition.” His appeal: “We are in such serious times and we must not allow Putin to divide our society.”

Media Pioneer editor-in-chief Michael Bröcker explained the irritated mood and verbal outbursts between the coalition partners to the fact that the SPD cannot really win in the polls at the moment, while Habeck’s ratings go “through the roof”. despite the mistakes. Heil assured: Those in charge of their bodies certainly aren’t just thinking about the next election at the moment.

It is much more about “decisions” than about “nickel things”, said the minister. A decision that has been discussed a lot recently is the introduction of the additional gas fee from October 1. This should prevent bankrupt gas companies like Uniper.

Nationalize the numbered gas traders?

“An unbalanced social mass,” says the journalist Bröcker. “Why should the gas consumer, who rightfully expects LNG (liquefied natural gas) Editor’s note) are now paying for the fact that Uniper screwed it up because they buy 50 percent Russian gas?” he asked.

His solution: nationalizing a number of gas traders and providing bankruptcy protection through direct and limited participation.

Calculate your gas bill

12000 kWh

approx. 85m2 living space

Your annual consumption in kWh:

20 cents per kWh

2400 € per year

Your current price including 19% VAT:


Previous costs / year including 19% VAT. (200 € / month)


Future costs / year including 7% VAT (180 € / month)

The difference per year is -242 or -20 / Month. The calculation contains reduced VAT to the extent of 7%.

Economist Monika Schnitzer had a completely different opinion. From their perspective, the gas surcharge is “not at all” anti-social. The surcharge is also mainly about creating an incentive to consume less gas.

“The incentive to save is still there!” Bröcker replied. He received support from Lanz: “This signal has been given for a long time”, the moderator agrees.

In view of the high costs of the energy crisis and the new aid package, Lanz wanted to know from Labor Minister Heil when the debt brake would be lifted. This will be decided by the economic reality”, said the SPD man. The debt brake is an important instrument, but it also recognizes exceptional situations.


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Heil: Power solos ‘not on the agenda’

Journalist Bröcker explained that he considered it impossible at the moment to comply with the debt moratorium. His guess: “The SPD thinks Christian Lindner can’t take it anymore, but you can’t say it publicly.”

Schnitzer also admitted that he lacked imagination as to where the money should come from for the relief the state wanted to provide. As a possible solution, the economy introduced a temporary energy sol based on the post-reunification sol model.

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