"Mexican Standoff" - Trielle in Berlin: TV-Debatten in der heißen Wahlkampfphase 2021

Jürgen Maier; Paul Lukowicz; Jennifer Bast; Marco Hirsch; Martin Lange

In: Zeitschrift für Parlamentsfragen (ZParl), Vol. 53, No. 1, Pages 39-52, Nomos Verlagsgesellschaft, Baden-Baden, 2022.


Multiple debates were held on TV in the 2021 German federal election campaign between the chancellor candidates Armin Laschet (CDU/CSU), Olaf Scholz (SPD) and Annelena Baerbock (Bündnis 90/Die Grünen) . For the last three televised debates (so-called „Trielle“), surveying viewers immediately before and immediately after the events and conducting real-time measurement of the candidates’ debate performance help understand their per- ception and impact . The debate performances of Scholz and Baerbock were rated signifi- cantly better than Laschet’s . The candidates used very different strategies . While Laschet focused surprisingly strongly on attack, Scholz pursued a classic incumbent strategy . The perceived performance of the chancellor candidates in the debates had a direct impact on their likability ratings, most strongly in the first broadcast . Overall, Scholz benefited the most from these debates . Baerbock, but especially Laschet, failed to close the gap on the SPD . Our analyses underscore the impact of televised debates and their outstanding impor- tance in election campaigns .

Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz
German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence