By Oisin Sweeney • 13 January 2021 • 8:54
One of Merkel's longtime political rivals is poised to assume her position - Image Source: Friedrich Merz
GERMANY’S leading Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party is on the brink of selecting a successor to veteran leader and Chancellor Angela Merkel.
The CDU currently leads the polls in Germany by 15 points, as the country begins preparations for the September federal elections. For the last 16 years, the centre-right party has dominated German government and politics under the leadership of veteran Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Now the party seems poised to elect one of her longtime rivals to take over her position, millionaire lawyer Friedrich Merz. The straight-talking politician is known for his simple answers to interviews and debates, as well as his more firmly held beliefs and ideas than Merkel’s famous loose pragmatism.
If the CDU’s 1001 delegates elect Merz the party leader, it is highly likely he could become the leader of Europe’s largest country by the end of the year. His more skeptical views on immigration and the EU are hoped by CDU analysts to steal voters from the more hardline right-wing Alternative for Deutschland (AfD) party.
Merz may also lure green-minded voters, as he has described climate change as a “mega issue” and has spoken of his desire to make Germany’s booming industrial sector more environmentally sustainable.
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Oisin is an Irish writer based in Seville, the sunny capital of Andalucia. After starting his working life as a bookseller, he moved into journalism and cut his teeth as a reporter at one of Ireland's biggest news websites. Since joining Euro Weekly News in November, he has enjoyed covering the latest stories from Seville, Spain and further afield - with special interests in crime, cybersecurity, and European politics. Anyone who can pronounce his name first try gets a free cerveza...
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