BERLIN - A lawmaker from the eurosceptic, anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany (AfD) who has criticized euro zone rescues and the European Central Bank has been chosen as the chair of parliament's influential budget committee.
The top job in what is nicknamed the "king's committee" due to its power in scrutinizing government ministries' budgets is traditionally reserved for the largest opposition party. That is set to be the AfD if Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives and the Social Democrats (SPD) seal a new coalition.
The committee voted on Wednesday to accept AfD candidate Peter Boehringer, who rose to prominence by campaigning for the repatriation of Germany's gold reserves from overseas. He has also called for an "immediate end to mass illegal Islamic migration to Europe that threatens our existence."
The AfD and the pro-market Free Democrats (FDP) voted in favor of Boehringer, 48, while the conservatives, SPD and Greens abstained. The far-left Linke voted against him.
The AfD also succeeded on Wednesday in securing the chairmanship of two other parliamentary committees - for legal affairs and tourism.