“The CDU has become lazy,” says Friedrich Merz
Friedrich Merz sharply criticizes his party. Armin Laschet has his support – as long as he has a chance to fulfill his tasks. Behind the scenes there should have been a loud conflict between Merz and Brinkhaus.
FFive days after the federal election, the CDU politician Friedrich Merz goes tough with his party in court. “The CDU has become lazy,” said the ex-Union faction leader in the newspapers of the Funke media group. For many years she relied on the government apparatus. “The Union has forgotten how to work thematically. This applies to their content orientation as well as to their presence with the topics and the people. “That must now be worked out again -” regardless of whether in the government or in the opposition “.
In the Bundestag election last Sunday, the SPD had become the strongest force with 25.7 percent. The Union had a historically bad result with 24.1 percent.
Merz criticized that the CDU had given up a lot of profile and content in the long years of government responsibility. “I applied twice as party chairman in order to re-orientate the party more strongly in terms of content and strategy. But that’s spilled milk. It is like it is. We are where we are. ”Merz had last applied for party chairmanship at the end of 2020 and was defeated by Armin Laschet, who then became the Union’s candidate for chancellor.
“My need for contentious votes against the establishment is covered”
“I applied twice for the party chairmanship, each time with the support of an overwhelming majority of the CDU members, who are still unbroken. Nevertheless, the party congress decided differently twice, ”Merz told the Funke newspapers. “My need for contentious votes against the establishment has been met.” He is now preparing himself to be “a normal and hopefully good MP”.
About the outcome of the election, Merz said that the Union had lost a considerable part of its voters over a long period of time. “What remains is a hard core of 24 percent, which for the most part voted for the Union not even out of conviction, but out of sheer fear of red-green-red. However, fear of the opponents is not a stable foundation for a political party in the long term, and certainly not for a people’s party. “
With a view to his support for Laschet, Merz said: “If we have elected a chairman, then I will support him as long as he has a chance to fulfill his tasks.” And he still has this chance. When asked how long this would apply, Merz said: “We’ll have to wait and see. We are now in an extremely sensitive and uncertain phase of German politics. “
Merz clashed with Brinkhaus
How tense the situation within the CDU is, became apparent in a violent exchange of blows between Merz and Union faction leader Ralph Brinkhaus. As the “Spiegel” reported on Thursday evening, the reason was Brinkhaus’ plan to be re-elected as parliamentary group chairman instead of initially staying in office temporarily.
According to the report, Merz accused Brinkhaus in a confidential round on Tuesday afternoon of harming the party with his project. The Union is having bigger problems than having to deal with the re-election of Brinkhaus for days. Brinkhaus is also said to have become emotional. Brinkhaus is said to have replied that he did not want to be intimidated – the criticism was “ridiculous”.
Then, according to the report, Merz slammed a glass filled with orange juice on the table. Party leader Armin Laschet, foreign politician Norbert Röttgen, Health Minister Jens Spahn and the chairman of the North Rhine-Westphalian state group in the Union parliamentary group, Günter Krings, also took part in the round. The procedure was essentially confirmed to the German Press Agency.