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Merz does not want to break with Merkel, Laschet goes to Röttgen | Free press

Stuttgart (dpa) – Shortly before the decision on the CDU party chairmanship, all three applicants made a pledge to overcome the rifts and camp thinking in the party after their election.

NRW Prime Minister Armin Laschet, ex-faction leader Friedrich Merz and foreign politician Norbert Röttgen were digitally linked on Wednesday with a retreat of the Baden-Württemberg parliamentary group.

Merz, who has many supporters in the southwestern CDU, assured that if he was elected CDU leader, he wanted to avoid a break with the Merkel era. “After Angela Merkel, the shaping of time – whether we like it or not – will be seen as a profound turning point by the population of Germany,” said Merz. “I want to do everything I can to prevent it from breaking. It won’t be a break. We would be completely nuts if we did it differently. “But even after Corona, things will no longer become normal. The country would have a number of national and international tasks. The future CDU party leader will determine the face of the party and the country.

In the weekend, the successor of party leader Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer is chosen at a digital party conference. It was good that the current situation was over by then, Merz said. It was difficult for Kramp-Karrenbauer to keep the store together. She succeeded. “But of course you can still see that the party is not now being run as strongly as it should be.”

After the election, the party must show unity no matter who wins the race, Merz emphasized. Because the eight months would pass before the federal election. “We will all be on the podium at the end of the party conference – when the national anthem is not sung, but when it is played,” he said. In principle, he promised in the case of his election, “I will really do nothing but do nothing but deal exclusively with the party until the federal election and beyond.”

The CDU must create unity, says candidate Laschet. “A future government must reflect the breadth of the party even more.” The CDU had to do the trick to retain the people who particularly valued Angela Merkel as a person, while also finding answers to future issues of the post-Merkel era. The CDU must pay attention to its economic competence and internal security in the election campaign. Not only should one talk about the Green Deal, but talk more about industrial production and jobs, that would be neglected for him.

The outline’s candidacy for the federal presidency is supported by CDU group leaders from five state parliaments. In a joint statement, the group leaders from North Rhine-Westphalia, Lower Saxony, Bremen, Thuringia and Brandenburg campaigned on Wednesday for delegates from the CDU digital federal party conference to elect Laschet as new CDU chair on Saturday.

Norbert Röttgen also called for party cohesion for the time after the party congress. “If we can’t do it credibly and really, then God help us,” he said, referring to the upcoming election this year. “I am not a warehouse. I can and want to represent the whole party ”, Röttgen promised.

Despite all the dedication to unity, Laschet used the Southwest MP’s short action to attack his competitor Röttgen. He had previously been critical of the cooperation with the FDP in view of the upcoming federal elections. “You cannot rely on a party that sometimes wants to govern and then not,” Röttgen said of the Augsburger Allgemeine.

He viewed insulting the FDP as a fundamental mistake, argued Laschet. “That drives everyone to the traffic light.” Laschet called Röttgen’s statements dangerous. He’s trying to keep a line with FDP party leader Christian Lindner. “Maybe there will come a time when we need it,” said Laschet. He prefers a Jamaica alliance with the Greens and the FDP over black and green. “Because we also need a correction. That is why I would like a strong FDP for the federal elections. With the Greens, the CDU must lead fundamental debates on every issue – “especially at the federal level with many left-wing Greens.” That’s much more difficult than a coalition with the FDP.

Laschet warned very urgently against a traffic light coalition consisting of the Greens, the SPD and the FDP. “That’s the hardest part: a coalition of the SPD, which covers the social, the Greens, and the FDP, which then covers the economic part – what does the CDU do about it? That is the great danger for both Baden-Württemberg and the Federal Republic of Germany. “

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