Mark Kayser on the German election for Merkel's CDU
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Germany’s election result has been described as a “disaster” for Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union following bitter internal party tensions of the selection of Armin Laschet as the candidate to replace Angela Merkel. Mr Laschet failed to win over the German electorate at last month’s election leaving Chancellor Merkel’s legacy under threat as the CDU prepare to hand over power to their centre-left rivals the Social Democratic Party.
Professor Kayser told Express.co.uk: “I mean Armin Laschet was not the first choice, [Angela Merkel’s] first choice even as a successor.
She tried before with other personalities who just didn’t work out.
“So basically in there was a very divisive party conference in which they had to choose a leader in the CDU and also the sister party the CSU and they had a big disagreement in which the CSU, wanted to have their party leader Markus Söder and there was some support for him also among the CDU.
“But the CDU which is the larger of the two sister parties managed to drive through their candidate.
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“I mean Laschet, who is, you know, the minister in the largest state of Germany in North-Rhine Westphalia and so they said he’s been successful already proven track record.”
“But most voters, once they actually started to watch had a slightly different opinion,” he added.
“It is a disaster for the CDU.”
The SPD, who came first in last month’s election, the Greens, and the pro-business FDP have held talks on whether they have enough in common to form a government together.
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The CDU narrowly lost the popular vote to the SPD and now faces a stretch in opposition after having occupied the Chancellorship for 52 out of the 72 years the Federal Republic of Germany has been in existence.
Professor Kayser told Express.co.uk: “The CDU-CSU are basically the natural parties of government in Germany.
“So this is a sea change in that sense.
“They have very very weak support at levels they have never seen before, basically a quarter of the electorate.
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He added: “I am not really sure whether this was an election about preserving the status quo and continuity in the sense of the Merkel years.
“One could argue that two of the biggest gainers in this election were the Greens and the FDP.
“Especially with young voters, they cleaned up they did very very well with young voters.
“That is a cry for change these were both opposition parties that don’t have so much in common honestly but they do overlap in some areas.”
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