An open power struggle in Europes last major Peoples Party: the German Christian Democrats of the CDU/CSU do not agree on their leader in the parliamentary elections in September. Both CDU chairman Armin Laschet and Markus Söder, chairman of the Bavarian sister-party CSU, have said that they want the position and that they want to succeed Angela Merkel as Chancellor.
It seemed that today the bullet was through the church, because the top of the CDU unanimously voted for Laschet, but Söder does not just give up. “This is not a decision you make with twenty or thirty men. Elections will only be won with broad support.”
Yesterday, Söder said that he only wants to become Kanzlerkandidat if the CDU wants and supports him. However, after the decision of the CDU Summit, he does not wish to withdraw as a candidate. He says the decision is too important for that. “We are very bad. This year, its not about which of the CDU/CSU will rule, but whether we will get into the government,” says Söder.
Söder, as well as the rest of the CSU summit, relies on the polls. Söder is clearly more popular among the German population than Laschet. In a recent survey, 54 percent saw him as a good leader and possible successor to Merkel, and only 19 percent think that of Laschet. Söder today: “We must make clear to the people why the party makes a different choice than the people want.”
Söder owes its popularity mainly to its rectilinear appearance in the coronacrisis. Laschet changed course several times and is therefore seen as less strong leader. Laschet says he doesnt want to be guided by polls.
“ There are countless examples of how these values of popularity can change,” says Laschet. He won several elections despite bad forecasts. Because of his ability to collect bad news and criticism, without falling over, the magazine Der Spiegel describes him as the Rocky Balboa of German politics.
Hows it going now? Söder now wants to talk to other people in the party. He says he does not want to ignore the signal from the CDU summit, but he does not want to ignore other signals he has received.
Among other things, he wants to talk to the CDU members of the Bundestag. How the decision will be made now is unclear. Söder has indicated that he wants to cut a knot before the end of the week