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Martin Schulz – Justice no SPD win in the egalitarian Germany News

Saturday, August 19th, 2017 | Economy

It is perhaps much more a feel-good economy that is more egalitarian than many others in Europe. In view of the unbroken growth of the German economy over 12 quarters, the main opponent of the Federal Chancellor in the Bundestag elections on September 24 is hard to give his candidacy a new impetus, which is based on social justice. "The fact that Germany is doing well does not mean that all people in Germany are doing well," said Schulz in a Spiegel interview on 3 August. "Very many Germans are not doing well at all."
Surveys suggest that his election campaign strategy could be in vain at a time when Germans are more satisfied with their economic situation than ever before in the last five election cycles. Europe's largest economy grew by 0.6 percent in the second quarter, supported by domestic demand, the Federal Statistical Office announced on Tuesday.
Merkel struggles statistics
In addition, measures for income inequality and distribution over a major part of Merkel's twelve-year term show that Germany is located among the large European economies at the lower end of the inequality scale. The Christian Democratic chancellor regularly points out the solid development of the economy in her election campaigns.
The Gini coefficient for Germany, a measure of inequality in the distribution of household income, was even below that of the traditionally egalitarian Netherlands, according to the latest available data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. The coefficient measures the unequal distribution of income after taxes and transfers.
Figures from the European Union suggest that the equality of income is increasing in the middle of Merkel's current term of office, compared to her first full year as chancellor in 2006, after she was taken over by Social Democrat Gerhard Schröder. However, the discrepancy persisted even after 2007 in a narrow range.
Fight for labor rights
The 61-year-old Schulz took over the leadership of the SPD, Germany's oldest party, which had existed for 154 years, whose roots go back to the struggle for workers' rights at the time of the industrial revolution. In the face of a historic low in unemployment, Schulz is focusing on a broader campaign for a more equitable society, including safe old-age provision, equal pay for women and comprehensive free childcare.
After an initial boost, the Social Democrats fell back in the polls, while the results indicate that voters are more concerned about the issue of migration than about pensions or the economic situation. Less than six weeks before the election, Merkel's Union is 12 percentage points ahead of the SPD, according to Bloomberg Poll Tracker.


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