The Saxony State Court has now confirmed its preliminary ruling that the AfD can run with the first 30 candidates on the list. They'll probably still complain to the election review committee after the elections, but any result there is unlikely to have a practical effect.
Meanwhile over in Brandenburg, the AfD has edged into the lead position with 21 percent in two polls, though the field remains close with CDU, SPD and Greens all between 16 and 18, and the Left another two or so points behind. The FDP is trailing barely above the five-percent threshold. Both a Kenya coalition and Red-Red-Green look possible, though the latter is more likely.
Also, vice chancellor Olaf Scholz has reneged on his initial declining to become the next SPD (co-)head, and is now looking for a female running mate since the suggestion to elect a Green/Left/AfD-style leadership duo has become a de-facto requirement for the contest (there was a recent report that some female MPs are getting upset by a wave of phone calls inviting them to be "the woman at his side" for various hopefulls, in which they hardly get a word in).
It seems that after the party brass already became worried that no big names had made bids by that point, the heavyweights now consider it safe to come forward without getting burnt immediately. Most recently, Lower Saxony State interior minister Boris Pistorius teamed up with Saxony state integration minister Petra Köpping as the fourth and so far most substantial couple; it has been pointed out that Pistorius would be the kind of law-and-order figure satisfying the corresponding desire for public security among traditional SPD voters which the party has lacked at the national level since former federal interior minister Otto Schily, while Köpping would be first to represent East Germany at its top since the short reign of former Brandenburg state minister president Matthias Platzeck.
OTOH, Scholz is known as the "Scholzomat" for his uncharismatic style, and one of the few SPD leaders who remain on the record as supporters of the current grand coalition; not something generating enthusiasm at the party base right now. Further candidates can still declare until 1 September. The base vote starts on 14 October, with results to be announced on the 26th, leaving time for a runoff if no team gets an outright majority. The vote will be technically advisory, but the SPD convention from 6-8 December is expected to follow it.
Whether there will even be a grand coalition at this point is dubious, as the base choice might inform the decision of whether the party will use the half-term review set forth in the coalition agreement to quit the unloved government. It might then well be that the convention kicks off the SPD campaign for snap elections, as the engorged Greens are unlikely to simply join a "Jamaica" coalition with the liberal FDP to keep Merkel in power; they could gain considerable seats and be a much stronger partner - possibly even leading the government - after an election.
Edited by BansheeOne, 16 August 2019 - 1145 AM.