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Duell – Bundestag election: Angela Merkel against Martin Schulz in the news blog

Sunday, September 3rd, 2017 | World News

Big thematic surprises are not to be expected in the TV duel between CDU boss Angela Merkel and the SPD chairman Martin Schulz. Four thematic blocks have been defined, as the broadcasters announced: migration, foreign policy, social justice and internal security. On the whole, however, the following factors may play a role:

Social justice: Here the challenger should hope to score the most. Merkel knows: in social issues, she can hardly win against the Social Democrats. It is for them to give themselves at least no nakedness. Schulz accuses Merkel that she is not interested in the concerns of the "little people".

Education: Schulz wants to change the school policy – and with billions, the responsible countries for a "national educational alliance" win. The strict separation of the competencies of the Länder and the Confederation in education was written into the Constitution by the Union and the SPD in 2006. 2014 and 2017, the ban was relaxed by the grand coalition, so that the Confederation could provide more money for universities and the rehabilitation of maroder school buildings to the Länder.

Labor market: In the "Justice" field, the social and labor market as well as the classical social policy should be taken into account. In the current issue of Air-Berlin-Rescue, where there are thousands of jobs, there is hardly any friction between the Union and the SPD. Merkel could try to pinpoint Schulz's point-of-departure from Schröder's Reformagenda-2010, in order to warn against Red-Red-Green.

 Pension: Schulz considers Merkel's failure in pension policy. This will lead to a fall in pensions and an increase in contributions. This is "poverty in old age", he warns. The Union replies that with the reform of the retirement reform of the grand coalition of 2007, pension levels and contributions will be clarified by 2030.

Despair: Schulz has tightened the tone against the chancellor last weekend, attacked her personally and kept her emphasis. By flying cheaply with airplanes and helicopters of the Government's willingness to fly, she was making election campaigns at the expense of taxpayers. Merkel replied that the payment of flights was legally regulated. She was always on duty.

Exhaust gas, toll: In the controversy over the future of the diesel engine there are actually not many knackpunkte between Schulz and Merkel. Both emphasize that the diesel is still needed a long time. Schulz, however, announced that he would undo the controversial car toll, which was supported by his party, when he became a chancellor. Merkel, on the other hand, confesses to the toll project, which was initially rejected by the CSU, but which was carried out by the CSU.

Foreign Policy / Turkey: The fact that Schulz Merkel is accused of being too lazy to deal with the Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is regarded as a matter of fact. He calls for an ultimatum in the conflict over the Germans imprisoned in Turkey. If Erdogan did not immediately release the prisoners, the EU would have to break the negotiations for an extension of the customs union. Merkel does not regard ultimates as a matter of principle because they make negotiations more difficult. However, Schulz has already taken the wind from her sails when she announced that Berlin would block the negotiations on an expansion of the customs union.

Refugees and Migrants: Schulz could tell Merkel that she had moved away from her welcome policy in 2015, and that she was now on foreclosure. However, it would be difficult for him that the SPD in the grand coalition had contributed to the tightening of asylum and migration policies as a small government partner. It is quite possible that the head of the SPD puts his finger into the UNION Wound refugee ceiling. The quarrel between Merkel and CSU boss Horst Seehofer over a ceiling for refugees is only put on hold until possible coalition negotiations.

Internal Security, Terrorism, Crime: Here it is the opposite of social justice. The Union is traditionally credited with greater competence. In addition, after the Islamic attacks in Germany, the Social Democrats supported the tightening of legislation in the field of security.

Defense / Armament: One of the youngest favorite subjects of Schulz and Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel. Gabriel has accused Merkel of submitting to US President Donald Trump for writing the two percent target for the defensive vote in the election program. According to the SPD this would amount to 30 billion euros more for armament. In 2014, NATO agreed on the wording that each member country should increase defense expenditure by two percent in 2024. At the time, this was supported by SPD Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

Withdrawal of the US nuclear weapons: A permanent theme in Germany. In 2009, Frank-Walter Steinmeier already moved into the SPD election campaign, FDP man Guido Westerwelle also tried it. Gabriel supports Schulz in his call for a withdrawal of US nuclear weapons. So far, however, every government has supported the officially unconfirmed stationing of US nuclear weapons in Germany.


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