CDU chairmanship: Röttgen promotes the “modern center”

Status: October 31, 2021 7:02 p.m.

Who will be the successor to CDU leader Laschet? In all likelihood, it comes down to a duel between the conservative economic politician Merz and the moderate foreign politician Röttgen. The latter advertised in Report from Berlin for a renewal of the party.

After the election disaster in the federal election, the CDU is looking for a new chairman – and this time it will probably not be able to get past the grassroots. On Saturday at least the district chairmen of the Christian Democrats voted with an overwhelming majority for such an approach. And so, for the very first time in the history of the party, such a member survey is becoming more and more likely. Five politicians are traded as successors to Armin Laschet – Friedrich Merz, Norbert Röttgen, Jens Spahn, Carsten Linnemann and Ralph Brinkhaus. But only Merz and Röttgen are given real opportunities.

Norbert Röttgen, CDU, on the search for a new CDU board

Report from Berlin 6:05 p.m., October 31, 2021

First procedure, then personal details

Röttgen emphasized in Report from Berlinthat the CDU has to reinvent itself after the election defeat and personnel quarrels. “It is important that we bring order to the store again,” said Röttgen. When asked whether he was running for party chairman, he did not want to answer directly. A procedure has been agreed that must first be carried out in an orderly manner. It is now important “that you listen to the base”. Only when all the specifications have been made should it be about personal details.

Röttgen admitted, however, that the CDU does not have infinite time to decide on the chairmanship – also because it will now have to do opposition work in the future. “We should have made the decision by the end of the year.”

“The center can only be the middle”

However, Röttgen indirectly recommended himself as party chairman: Because this is the center of the party – “and the center can only be the center,” said the foreign politician, who, unlike his competitor Merz, is an explicit representative of the center. This center, however, must be more modern and follow developments in society: “We have to re-anchor ourselves as a people’s party,” concluded Röttgen.

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