In an interview with ZDF, Andrea Römmele says that the party is deeply divided over this issue.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a delay in CDU’s efforts to find a new party leader. Germany’s Christian-Democratic Party is currently led by Annegret Kamp-Karrenbauer. She announced her resignation in February 2020 and remains the party leader until a successor is elected. The party conference, scheduled to take place in early December, may now be postponed or held online, pending an improvement in the COVID-19 situation.
The decision has drawn sharp criticism from Friedrich Merz, one of the three candidates to become the new party leader.
“In the polls, Merz is clearly ahead of his challengers, and he wants to drive this lead home,” says Andrea Römmele, Professor of Communication in Politics and Civil Society and Dean of Executive Education at the Hertie School, “The political dynamics may change dramatically [in a few months].”
She adds that Merz’s criticism is based on previous disagreements with Chancellor Angela Merkel. “I don’t think it’s right to draw the cancellation of the party conference into this debate,” Römmele says. “The health of the population is what matters most, and it is absolutely clear that the party conference cannot be held in the time of a pandemic.”
Read the full interview here (in German).
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Views expressed by the author/interviewee may not necessarily reflect the views and values of the Hertie School.