The Union is clearly ahead in the polls, but CDU leader Merz stated in an interview with ntv.de: "That's not enough." In his second year in office, the party leader wants to sharpen the party's profile - including in the domain of the Greens.
After his first year as federal chairman of the CDU, Friedrich Merz is dissatisfied with the popularity of his party, despite first place in the polls. "28 percent is okay for the first year, but that's not enough. I want us to be stable over 30 percent," said Friedrich Merz in an interview with the news site ntv.de. The Union must become so strong that the ruling traffic light coalition no longer has its own majority in the Bundestag. In order to achieve this goal, Merz called for "even more of his own concepts and ideas" from his party. The Union faction leader announced: "In 2023 we will focus on the issues and our own proposed solutions."
After his victory at a digital party conference, the CDU delegates elected Merz to the office of federal chairman by postal vote, which the Sauerland official has held since January 31. "The dispute from 2021 is already quite deep. Many in the CDU and also in the CSU have not forgotten that," said Merz about the election defeat of the chancellor candidate Armin Laschet, which was also due to conflicts within the Union. "Markus Söder and I agree that we will not repeat that," announced Merz.
Anyone who will be the Union's candidate for chancellor in 2025 "does not employ anyone here," said Merz. "After the European elections, this question will then come more to the fore, but certainly not before that." Until then, Merz wants to sharpen the climate policy profile of the CDU. "We also want to give very different answers to these issues than the Greens, because we have the same goal, but we make completely different suggestions for how to get there," said Merz. "The Greens often fundamentally reject new technologies." Neither system debates nor the protests of the last generation solved the problem. "Our answer is: We need more engineers and fewer ideologues to meet the challenges of climate change."
Read the whole interview about Merz's first year at the head of the federal party on Saturday morning at ntv.de. Merz explained to ntv.de what the CDU chairman thinks about the war in Ukraine in the first part of the interview, which was published on Wednesday.