On Tuesday, when the survey disaster began, Markus Söder was sitting in the Antiquarium of the Munich residence. At a long table, under magnificent ceiling paintings, in front of fine china. The Prime Minister had invited to the reception at the start of the IAA mobility fair.
After the soup course, he got up, picked up a microphone and spoke to the auto managers. “There are some who are attached to yesterday’s ideas,” said Söder, “we will present the ideas of tomorrow.” It sounded a bit like the spring, when he had just lost the internal battle for the Union’s candidacy for chancellor against Armin Laschet. Here CSU boss Söder, the innovator. There CDU boss Laschet, who remains in yesterday. That was Söder’s message back then, for example when he said: “We need a political New Deal instead of Old School.”
It is now autumn, and in the draft for its lead proposal, which the CSU intends to pass on Saturday at the party congress in Nuremberg, the word “renewal” can only be found once, measly. Another word appears all the more often, even in the heading: stability.
Under the title “Stability instead of left slipping”, the CSU lists in detail what the Union in Germany and the CSU in Bavaria have achieved – in the past and yesterday. The message that gets stuck while reading: Everything should stay as it is. Remarkable for a party whose boss wants to make the CSU more modern, future-oriented, more attractive for young people.
The dramatic fall in the polls has evidently moved the party strategists to suspend this long-term plan for just under three weeks until the federal election. Anyone who reads the draft proposal for the party congress must in any case get the impression that the CSU is only concerned with collecting its regular clientele in order to prevent at least the worst: the CSU falling below the five percent mark nationwide.
At the end of his speech in the residence, Markus Söder raised his glass: “To the future!” This toast was also addressed to representatives of the auto industry, not his party. Symbolically, the image of the toasting Söder would have been a good fit for the situation of the CSU. There was no wine in his glass, but Diet Coke.