Germany Who will replace Angela Merkel in the German leadership? The strongest option has not yet expressed a desire for the task

Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder is being mediated as Germany’s next Federal Chancellor.


Bavaria in the capital Munich it rains.

Here, in Germany’s second most populous state, there is a “disaster situation”. This was stated by the state prime minister Markus Söder, 54, in early December. The reason is the acceleration of the coronavirus epidemic.

Bavaria is in an interesting situation for the future of Germany and of Europe as a whole, as the next German Chancellor may emerge from here.

Sure it’s not. Germany’s political near future is like a cloud of heavy sleet. And it is also a big issue for the whole of Europe.

Germany’s largest party, the CDU, will elect a new chairman next weekend, but a stronger bet on the next federal chancellor is currently Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder, who has risen to the center of German policy during the coronavir crisis.

Chancellor Angela Merkelin, 66, a major career in the German – and European – leadership will end soon, as he will no longer be a candidate in next September ‘s elections and will not be available as Chancellor afterwards.

Merkel’s party, the Christian Democratic CDU, is in a strong number one position in polls. The latest result gives 35 percent readings, more than eight percentage points more than in the 2017 election.

The former leader of the parliamentary group is seeking to chair the CDU Friedrich Merz, 65, Prime Minister of North Rhine-Westphalia Armin Laschet, 59, and Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, former Minister of the Environment Norbert Röttgen, 55.

Friedrich Merz, Norbert Roettgen and Armin Laschet answered questions in December in a live broadcast moderated by Tanja Samrotzki.­

“They are all credible and able to inspire people,” the CDU party secretary Paul Ziemiak assured on Friday in a troika debate referring to a possible chancelloral candidacy – apparently an issue that needs to be specifically highlighted.

Read more: Germany seeks new direction – The chairman of the largest party will be elected in a week, and there is either a turn to the right, a Merkel line or a surprise

The CDU will elect its chancellor candidate later in the spring with its Bavarian sister party, the CSU, the Christian Social Union. So the candidate can be Söder, Merz, Laschet, Röttgen – or possibly someone else. Minister of Health Jens Spahnink too the name has been skipped.

In July, Markus Söder hosted Chancellor Angela Merkel in Bavaria in a remarkably prominent manner. Merkel did not admit that she favored Söder as her successor but contented herself with saying that “Bavaria has a good prime minister”.­

Markus Söder likes to appear in Bavarian emblem colors and wears a blue and white checkered face mask.­

Main Government Party The CDU has stumbled for a long time in its leadership patterns. Chairman of the CDU Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, 58, announced his resignation presidency almost a year ago.

In Germany, the pleasure of politicians is often measured in polls. Of the options put forward for the CDU / CSU chancellor, Söder is clearly the most popular. Popularity is notoriously useful when the goal is to gain power.

Söder’s position is based on the interest rate crisis. That is practically the only topical political content he has talked about. Crown determination has become his trademark.

“Now we have to act,” he says to underline his actions.

“Now you have to continue on the wise line,” he says while praising himself.

He speaks like Merkel’s thoughts, but with her own rhetoric. He often comes to the public before meetings deciding on interest rate restrictions and insists on things that are then locked in later. Often the meetings are carefully prepared in advance, but Söder gives the impression that his line won.

In Munich Söder is known – so the question here is whether he would have the material to be chancellor.

The streets are quiet, but the actual feeling of disaster is not noticed. Most rush wet under the whipping sleet to shelter as quickly as possible.

Sabine Bäumler drinking coffee on the street while standing with his friend despite the sleet. It’s the only way to coffee together because of coronavirus restrictions.

Women are immediately ready to talk about politics, but they don’t want a picture.

Who would be the best Chancellor for Germany?

“My own candidate is Merkel,” Bäumler begins, ignoring the reality.

“Mrs Merkel is the top chancellor. I would like to see who can be better. He has handled the coronavirus crisis and other crises so sovereignly. He leads the country, always stays calm, is not populist. ”

But he’s not going to be a candidate. Would Söder visit?

Bäumler meanders.

“Only if he disguises himself as Merkel and is exactly like him.”

Bäumler says he is a voter for the Greens, but a leader for the Greens Robert Habeckia and Annalena Baerbockia he will not even be mentioned, even if one of them is nominated as the Chancellor of the Greens.

Even many Germans – let alone those living outside Germany – find it difficult to imagine Germany without Merkel at the helm. Merkel is a strong international brand. With these prospects, his career as Chancellor will be as long as Helmut Kohl between 1982 and 1998, 16 years in the autumn.

Söder is already said to be the shadow chancellor. However, he is primarily a leader in Bavaria.

If Söder becomes a chancellor and the CDU / CSU wins the September election, Söder will be able to make history.

Twice in history, the Union Chancellor has represented the CSU. Mixed Franz Josef Strauß (1980) that Edmund Stoiber (2002) lost the race to a demarche candidate seeking an extension.

“My place is in Bavaria,” Söder has repeated over the past year – albeit not as often as before.

His actions strongly suggest that the wind may turn. Since the US congressional attack, he has expressed statehood concern over the event and recalled that there are also parties in Germany who are seeking to undermine democracy.

Recently, he has also given interviews on the shape of the future government base. According to recent statements, a Christian Democratic Union and the Greens could be a good idea. Indeed, they have most clearly increased their support since the last election and therefore a strong bet on the future government base.

Söder is a strong, visible, consistent and acclaimed leader in the coronavirus crisis, but he seems to many to be too aspiring or sticky. Too confident, even Bavarian.

Söder is also known for several deformations. It can be seen as a capacity for renewal and learning, but some see it as a source of mistrust. What his line would be in Germany’s leadership can now only be guessed at.

Söder, who grew up in Nuremberg and still lives there, has a conservative background. He grew up in a family where the mother called the father a “boss” in consultation with the children. Dad was harsh and hardworking. From Söder’s previous years, politics tells stories of rude behavior.

Recently, Söder has found himself a “proponent of bees and equality,” in a recent unauthorized biography Markus Söder, Der Schattenkanzler (Roman Deininger, Uwe Ritzer) is said.

He also recalls that he was the Minister of the Environment when he decommissioned a nuclear power plant in Bavaria.

“At the beginning of I was in his position, but he takes himself a little too seriously, ”he says Jörn Boysenwho is waiting in Munich on the street for his daughter from school.

He can’t really say if Söder would be good. Of the parties, he is in favor of the CSU, but in fact the Liberal Party is leaning more towards the FDP.

“Jein,” he says of Söder. It means both “and” and “nein”.

Jörn Boysen finds good points in Markus Söder but does not consider this a perfect chancellor candidate.­

“Söder is too conservative for me, as is the whole CSU,” Boysen says.

But he has his pros and cons. We need people who say directly what needs to be done. Such is Söder. On the other hand, it seems he wants to please everyone, Boysen ponders.

Colapietro Bernadette quotes Söder himself:

“His place is in Bavaria,” he says.


According to Bernadette, Söder is not yet ready to lead the entire Germany.

“He still has to wait.”

Opinion is not entirely uncommon, although Söder, who has just turned 54, has been in politics since he was a teenager. German political culture includes valuing seniority.

Bernadette thinks Söder would need more experience because he doesn’t seem to understand how different cultures there are in Germany.

“He doesn’t have enough ability to compromise, and the entire German leadership would need it.”

Bernadette thinks Bavaria is a special case and knowing it is not enough for the Federal Chancellor.

Bavaria is self-sufficient and unique as a large and prosperous EU country. The state has a population of 13 million, more than Belgium or Sweden or, more generally, most EU Member States.

In recent years, Bavaria’s GDP has accounted for 18.4% of the total German economy, which in turn accounts for a quarter of the total EU economy. Bavaria has the lowest unemployment rate in 16 German states: 3.6% in November.

As Bavarian Prime Minister, Mr Söder is therefore already in a very important position.

In the CDU party According to polls, Söder is not as popular as among the people. However, in addition to Merkel and Health Minister Spahn, he is one of the most respected politicians in Germany. When choosing a Chancellor candidate, the CDU / CSU will, of course, consider who will lead the election.

The Germans also expect their Chancellor to be able to withstand the hard against the hard To Vladimir Putin than Recep for Tayyip Erdogan and to build a functioning transatlantic relationship with the new US leadership.

The EU as a whole is also at a turning point due to its fragmentation, and Germany is used to holding the reins. Who is this for?

Of the uncertain candidates on offer, Söder is kind of insecure because he does not admit that he is striving for anything – but at the same time the strongest in the eyes of the people.

He would have no obligation to seek German leadership. But it would be a good time now.


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