A survey suggests: Laschet and the Union could slip the election away. An expert sees failures in the Chancellor candidate – and the misery continues.
Berlin / Frankfurt am Main – The survey results have been on a wild roller coaster ride since the start of the election campaign – but the latest interim status already smells a bit like a turning point: In a Forsa survey on Wednesday (August 11), the Union is only four percentage points in front of the SPD, three in front of the Greens. At the same time, according to the survey, a red-red-green alliance would even be possible. Just like a traffic light – two power constellations without Armin Laschet, CDU and CSU.
SPD politicians are celebrating the water level in social networks, and the left is suddenly drumming aggressively again for an alliance with social democrats and the Greens. It is possible that the wind will turn again shortly. But one day after the Corona summit, a question arises: Will Armin Laschet still gamble away the Chancellery in the upcoming federal election? At least since the Greens’ brief soaring in May, this scenario no longer seemed so realistic.
Bundestag election: Laschet puts on the boxing gloves – the Union is “the ass on ice”
On Wednesday, the CDU boss started his election campaign in a very aggressive way: The chancellor candidate spoke to young people in an integrative boxing club in Frankfurt am Main and also got into the ring for a few minutes. To do this, he put on boxing gloves and gave a few blows to punch pads. Speaking to journalists, he then said that the CDU would fight in the coming weeks. “We must finally come to a political election campaign, to a clear position on the front,” said Laschet.
However, massive doubts have been circulating internally about Laschet’s course for chancellor not only since the latest poll setback – the call for a “political election campaign” could also be a reaction to critics in our own ranks. world– Deputy Editor-in-Chief Robin Alexander described in a podcast on the website The Pioneer on Wednesday his impression from a trip to Poland with Laschet in the past few days. “His environment is clearly nervous, but he is not,” he said. Alexander summed up the overall mood in the CDU even more succinctly. “Their ass is slowly getting on ice.”
Laschet in the criticism: Expert reprimands election campaign errors – and gives advice
A campaign expert attested Laschet meanwhile massive election campaign errors. Initially, the Laschet situation played into the cards, said Julius van de Laar, a former employee in Barack Obama’s election campaign, among others taz: “As long as the attention was paid to Annalena Baerbock’s mistakes, from the Union’s point of view it was right to keep your feet still.” However, the tide turned with the flood disaster at the latest.
“That was actually the moment when Laschet could have closed the bag – he who can manage the crisis and is ready to take on responsibility at the front line.” A trip together with competitors Scholz and Baerbock into the crisis area, with Laschet as self-declared “leader” would have been the right solution, judged van de Laar.
But Laschet missed this chance. Instead, the CDU boss came on the offensive very late. At the same time, Laschet had delivered unhappy pictures: “And instead of rushing forward, taking on the interpretation and saying how he imagined the structure, he and his team were busy correcting this picture for too long,” added the expert. “In the election campaign, the following applies: whoever declares, loses. The most effective weapon in the election campaign is the new information. “
Corona summit will be the next setback for Laschet: Chancellor candidate does not come off the defensive
On Tuesday evening, it almost seemed as if Laschet wanted to follow this maxim – and would still have failed: Shortly after the Corona summit, he answered questions in the ZDF’s “heute journal”. And, in the opinion of some observers, again did not look happy. When Anchorman Claus Kleber asked about failures in corona policy, the candidate for chancellor wanted to avoid explaining, he turned away from the topic of floods, talked for a few seconds at the same time with the intervening moderator – and yet pulled the short straw. “I am sorry that we are now speaking at the same time, but I have to insist that we stick to our questions and the construction of our program,” Kleber dismissed the CDU politician.
At the same time, Laschet once again had to put up with the accusation that his corona course was campaign-driven – for example the (according to ex-competitor Markus Söder, which is preliminary) rejection of strict access restrictions for unvaccinated people. “You pay close attention to the nuances here,” emphasized Kleber: “Those who have not been vaccinated will experience something like a lockdown because one day they will no longer be able to participate in some things. Do I understand them correctly?” Chancellor candidate. Laschet evaded: “Today we are in agreement, test, vaccinated or recovered, that is the category we work with.” The scenario of exorbitant incidences was “not discussed at all”.
Which brought another point of criticism from van de Laars to bear: “However, election campaigns are always a race for interpretative sovereignty. And Laschet never defined exactly where he wanted to go, ”complained the expert in the taz.
Baerbock is not the only target of ridicule: Laschet in focus after ZDF appearance – “like a caretaker”
In any case, the TV viewers did not save with scorn and ridicule for Laschet. There was even criticism of the CDU politician’s outfit: Kleber looked like the candidate for chancellor, Laschet “like a caretaker”, was read about. Another commentator sneered that after Kleber’s insistence, Laschet looked as if he was about to start “crying”. Which at least seems to prove that not only women in general and Annalena Baerbock in particular have to endure unobjective criticism of external appearances.
In any case, it remains to be seen whether Laschet can turn things around again. Most recently, the Union’s survey crisis even outshone negative campaigns directed at the Greens. Perhaps Laschet’s clear edge is now actually required – the Corona summit could have been the next missed opportunity for this. As early as Wednesday, the first federal states rushed past the federal government (and Laschet) with new standards instead of the incidence. And thus made the Chancellor candidate look bad with the reference to a lack of advice from the RKI. Especially since the calls for new standards are months old.
Alexander also had a concrete reason for the rather pale election campaign ready: In his mostly quite functional NRW government, Laschet always had more “aggressive” politicians at his side – such as Interior Minister Herbert Reul or the socially minded Josef Laumann from the CDU Workers wing. Laschet now lacked such figures. In fact, a more prominent election campaign team has been called for for weeks. But Laschet is evidently hesitating. And poll darling Söder is holding back. Is it enough to put on the boxing gloves? It stays open. (fn)