What happens next? German politicians kick off coalition talks

After the cards were dealt, Germany’s fraught election night had apparently left two options on the table: Either center-left Social Democrat (SPD) Olaf Scholz will preside over a coalition with the Green Party and the pro-free market Free Democrats (FDP), or center-right Christian Democrat (CDU) Armin Laschet will get the chance to do so. A grand coalition of the SPD and CDU is also mathematically possible, but that appeared to be the least-favored option among the key players on Monday. Still, it’s likely to be an arduous path to either a “traffic light” coalition (named after the parties’ colors: SPD/red, Green, FDP/yellow) or a Jamaica coalition (the Caribbean country’s national flag handily corresponds to the CDU/black, Green, FDP/yellow).