Partisan Evolution

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A Conservative in Name, German Chancellor's Moderation Angers Some

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The German chancellor's promise to raise the pensions of former East Germans could win her party votes in upcoming elections.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel is steadily implementing new laws, including early retirement and a minimum wage, which are desired by her coalition partner but are raising fears within her own party that jobs and economic growth may be at risk.

  • Facts

    Facts

    • A senior party leader of Ms. Merkel’s Christian Democrats criticized some of the Chancellor’s governments policies
    • He is comparing Ms. Merkel with previous German leaders, such as former Chancellor Helmut Kohl and said she is weaker than he was.
    • Merkel’s government introduced an early retirement scheme and a minimum wage.
  • Audio

    Audio

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Tied to the wishes of her coalition partner, Ms. Merkel is making herself unpopular in corners of her own party.

On Saturday, another critic raised his voice against what he feared would be an anti-business stance of Ms. Merkel’s coalition government on the controversial issues of fracking and genetic engineering.

Ms. Merkel oversees a broad right-left coalition of her own Christian Democratic Party and Social Democrats.

“We need to start over when it comes to our business policies,” said Michael Fuchs, a senior leader of Ms. Merkel’s Christian Democratic party in an interview with the German weekly, Der Spiegel. ”For the rest of this term, we have to stop anything that can weaken Germany as a business hub.”

While Ms. Merkel still remains the most popular politician in Germany, with 77 percent of voters approving, according to statistics, recent policy moves have triggered criticism from more conservative and business-oriented members of her party.

On Saturday, a member of the CDU’s leadership in Germany’s Bundestag, raised his voice about the course Ms. Merkel is taking when it comes to fracking and genetic engineering. Mr. Fuchs, who is representing the pro-business wing within Ms. Merkel’s party, wants the Chancellor to take a stronger lead on these issues.

“Fracking may be our only chance to become independent from Russia,” said Mr. Fuchs in an interview with local newspaper, Rheinische Post.

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