“If you want Merkel politics, you have to vote for Söder” – no, that is not yet a slogan for the election campaign this fall. But Bavaria’s Prime Minister Markus Söder put it similarly. “Anyone who hopes for Merkel votes in the autumn must know that Merkel votes only exist with Merkel politics,” said the trained television journalist on the digital Political Ash Wednesday in a replica living room with a snack and pretzels in the camera. So on the day when political opponents are verbally poured out.
In this case, Söder’s message was addressed to the head of the sister party CDU, Armin Laschet. He wants to inherit Angela Merkel as the top candidate in September and often hits the hook in the fight against corona. Most recently he railed that politics “shouldn’t always invent new limit values”. In doing so, he referred to decisions between the Chancellor and country leaders, which he himself supported. But the CDU / CSU have recently lost approval in surveys and Laschet, actually a Merkelian, is now differentiating himself from her course – could be well received by pandemic wearies and those who will soon vote in Baden-Württemberg and Rhineland-Palatinate.
From opponent to fellow campaigner
A little wrong world? Yes, of all people, Söder and Merkel are now in a tandem. For the Chancellor, whom he did not even want to invite to the election campaign finals in Munich in 2018, he only finds warm words today (“She is the one who gives us courage”). Both drive on sight in the pandemic and are against hasty easing. And achieved top ratings in terms of popularity. Now the Chancellor is still the most popular politician, ihe dissatisfaction with the government’s crisis management is growing. In Bavaria, too, there is increasing pressure on Söder, who in turn defends the strategy.
His state was badly affected, especially at the beginning of the pandemic, so he is taking strict measures. Sometimes he gives the prudent, then wide-legged father who demanded border controls (“We don’t want to experience a second Ischgl again“) – to the annoyance of the Tyroleans. The fact that some interpret him as an attempt to raise his profile, as he is said to have ambitions as a candidate for chancellor, is a bit too easy, but difficult to refute in view of the last few years.