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Parties: Klingbeil: Merz has “free rein” to run for chancellor

Parties: Klingbeil: Merz has “free rein” to run for chancellor

The Union does not want to name its candidate for chancellor until the fall. From the perspective of the SPD leadership, the preliminary decision has already been made.

SPD leader Lars Klingbeil assumes that CDU leader Friedrich Merz will be the Union’s candidate for chancellor in next year’s federal election. Merz “successfully got through” the CDU party conference, Klingbeil said in an interview with the dpa. “And I believe that this also gives him free rein when it comes to running for chancellor.” He assumes that CSU leader Markus Söder, North Rhine-Westphalia’s Prime Minister Hendrik Wüst and Schleswig-Holstein’s Prime Minister Daniel Günther “are also too weak to attack him right now.”

Klingbeil has so far left no doubt that Scholz will be the SPD’s candidate for chancellor again in 2025. In the dpa interview he made it clear that he would be happy with Merz as a challenger. “We’ll take what comes. But if I can choose now, then Friedrich Merz is one of those I would favor without me now interfering in the Union’s personnel policy,” he said. “There are candidates with different impulse control and that’s entertaining for an election campaign like this.” Merz is considered significantly more impulsive than Scholz.

A few days ago, the Chancellor also favored Merz as a challenger. “I think that is very likely and – if I can say so – I would be quite happy with it, but the CDU/CSU will decide that,” he said in a panel discussion organized by the Editorial Network Germany (RND).

Merz was confirmed as party leader by the CDU at the beginning of May. The decision on the Union’s candidacy for chancellor will only be made after the elections in three East German states in September.

Source: Stern

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