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Strack-Zimmermann apologizes after Scholz-autism comparison

Strack-Zimmermann apologizes after Scholz-autism comparison

After sharp criticism of the Chancellor, the FDP’s top candidate Strack-Zimmermann is rowing back. At least in her choice of words.

Shortly before her planned move to the European Parliament, FDP politician Marie-Agnes Strack-Zimmermann caused a stir with her sharp criticism of Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD). “After three years, I have noticed that he has almost autistic traits, both in terms of his social contacts in politics and his inability to explain his actions to citizens,” she told the “Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung” on Wednesday.

The SPD then sharply criticized the FDP’s top candidate for Europe. Strack-Zimmermann has now backtracked and apologized.

“I have been deeply disappointed and frustrated by Olaf Scholz’s actions and lack of communication, as neither of these things is good for our country,” said the FDP politician on the sidelines of an event on Thursday. “I am very sorry that I have hurt people with autism with my thoughtless comparison and I apologize to all those affected. I am already in personal contact with them.”

Criticism of Strack-Zimmermann for choice of words

Prior to this, prominent SPD representatives had sharply criticized the FDP politician for her choice of words. “People shout and insult each other in talk shows. And now we are also seeing the pathologizing of the competitor,” said the SPD’s top candidate for Europe, Katarina Barley, to the “Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung” on Wednesday. “This crosses a red line in democratic competition.” She was “glad that the Chancellor thinks before he decides and then acts prudently,” said Barley.

SPD General Secretary Kevin Kühnert spoke of a “disrespectful psychologization of the Chancellor.” Anyone who has no more arguments verbally denigrates their political rival, Kühnert complained in the “Rheinische Post”. “It has long since become a method for Ms. Strack-Zimmermann to attack other opinions with the help of strong language.”

Strack-Zimmermann, previously chairwoman of the Bundestag’s Defense Committee, is the FDP’s top candidate for the European elections, which will take place in Germany on June 9.

Source: Stern

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