Alexander Mitsch, who chairs an umbrella group of conservatives within the CDU/CSU parties, issued a press statement blaming Merkel for their current political difficulties: “From the point of view of the Values Union, Chancellor Angela Merkel alone is responsible for this defeat.
“As a consequence of the renewed electoral roll, we demand not only the resignation of Angela Merkel as a Party Chairman, but also a clear roadmap for handing over to a new Chancellor candidate of the Union.”
Talks between the CDU, the pro-business FDP and the pro-immigration Greens – a potential alliance nicknamed the Jamaica coalition, have been strained. Mitsch said that anti-immigration conservatives in his group would reject Merkel’s “Jamaica coalition” with the Greens, which is a bid to form a government sympathetic to open borders.
“For the forthcoming coalition negotiations, we are calling for the establishment of a ‘red line’ in the form of a restrictive immigration policy,” he pointed out, adding that “this is not an issue to be decided with the Greens”.
Mitsch would like to see former Finance Minister, Wolfgang Schäuble, as a possible replacement for Merkel. Schäuble, who has recently resigned his position in the Eurogroup to focus more on domestic affairs, is a st
Merkel has denied that a defeat by her party in a regional election in Lower-Saxony has weakened her position. Three weeks after her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) posted its worst national election result, the party suffered a surprise defeat to the Social Democrats (SPD). Until August, the CDU had had a clear lead in the polls, in the state which is home to the beleaguered carmaker Volkswagen.
Many in her own party believe Merkel is failing to recognise the unpopularity of her open border migration policy, which is believed to have led to erosion in support for the CDU.
Wolfgang Steiger, general secretary of the CDU’s economic advisory council, accused Merkel of arrogance because she glossed over the results of the 24 September election, in which the CDU secured 33 percent of the vote, its lowest share since 1949.
“The clue to the defeat in Hanover (Lower Saxony’s capital) is unfortunately to be found in the evening of the election of 24 September when the horrific losses of 8 percent were sugar-coated as if they were a strategic victory,” Steiger told a German press conference. Voters are now punishing Merkel for saying on election night that the CDU had “done everything right”, Steiger said.
Horst Seehofer, leader of the Bavaria-based CSU, is meanwhile leading calls within the conservative alliance for the parties to shift to the right or risk losing more ground to the Alternative for Germany (AfD). The CSU lost 10 percentage points in the election.