Debate in the Bundestag: Merkel promotes Laschet and attacks Scholz

Status: 07.09.2021 12:21 p.m.

Chancellor Merkel once again campaigned vigorously for the Union in what is likely to be the last session of the Bundestag before the election. She also criticized the “guinea pigs” utterances of Chancellor candidate Scholz.

Chancellor Angela Merkel has described the upcoming federal election as a directional decision and strongly promoted the Union Chancellor candidate Armin Laschet. At the same time, in the presumably last Bundestag session before the election on September 26, she warned against an alliance between the SPD and the Greens with the left.

“It doesn’t matter who runs this country,” she said. It is a special choice, “because in the most difficult times it is a directional decision for our country,” stressed Merkel. The citizens had the choice between two options: a government of the SPD and the Greens, “which accepts the support of the Left Party, or at least does not exclude it” or a government led by the CDU and CSU with Laschet at its head.

“The best way for our country is a CDU / CSU-led federal government with Armin Laschet as Federal Chancellor,” said Merkel. Such a government would ensure stability, reliability, moderation and center. “That is exactly what Germany needs.” The statements led to numerous interjections from the plenary hall.

Merkel criticizes Scholz for his statements

The chancellor’s tone of voice was unusual because Merkel had always emphasized the similarities with her coalition partner SPD when appearing in the Bundestag in recent years. Merkel also expressed direct criticism of Vice Chancellor and SPD Chancellor candidate Olaf Scholz. “Of course none of us was and is in any form a guinea pig,” she said, referring to statements made by Scholz during the election campaign. Each vaccinated person received a sufficiently tested vaccine. Politicians must convince people to vaccinate “and not argue with crooked pictures of guinea pigs”.

Last week, Scholz said in an interview with NRW local radio stations: “50 million have now been vaccinated twice. We were all guinea pigs for those who waited until now. That’s why I say as one of these 50 million – it went well. Please take part. ”

Scholz criticizes the Union’s energy policy

Scholz defended his choice of words after the Chancellor’s speech. You have to convince the population of the vaccination – relaxed, relaxed and also with jokes that are laughed about at many events. “If some don’t want to laugh and get upset about it, it may have something to do with the fact that they have little to smile about when they look at their polls,” he said.

Scholz also criticized the Union for its energy policy. “Industry knows how things are going. But they say: What we need for this is electricity,” said Scholz. The CDU and CSU have regularly refused to expand electricity capacities in recent years, most recently in June. “This is a threat to Germany as a business location,” warned Scholz. “Another federal government led by the CSU / CSU would cost Germany prosperity and jobs.”

The SPD candidate for Chancellor named three priorities for a federal government under his leadership: the fight against child poverty, affordable housing and stable pensions. For him, these are guarantees for the cohesion of society, said Scholz.

Laschet: standing at the turn of the epoch

Union Chancellor candidate Laschet thanked Merkel for her work as head of government. “She has led this country well through many crises.” He went on to say: “Those were 16 good years for Germany that we experienced.” The CDU politician called for a decisive fight for more security in Germany and the EU. In this country, terrorist threats would have to be consistently deported, said Laschet in his speech. North Rhine-Westphalia has actually deported 35 such people since 2017. In addition, Europe must work more closely together against terrorist threats. He accused Scholz of blocking armaments projects to better equip the Bundeswehr out of consideration for his party.

Laschet also sees Germany facing major challenges and is relying on international cooperation in the fight against climate change. “We are at a turning point,” said the North Rhine-Westphalian Prime Minister. He warned against “small-scale measures” in terms of climate protection. “We will only cope with this great task as a global task”. The CDU politician spoke of a “foreign climate policy”. You will also have to talk to countries like China and Russia.

Laschet also campaigned for an industry-friendly climate policy. The road to climate neutrality must be paved for the automotive, chemical and steel industries. Otherwise, many jobs in Germany would be lost. He is surprised “that the SPD also speaks so little about this topic”. With the concepts of the Greens and the Social Democrats, Germany will not be able to remain an industrial country. Economic literacy is essential in climate policy.

Baerbock: The market doesn’t care about people

Green chancellor candidate Annalena Baerbock, however, criticized the climate policy of the Union and the SPD as inadequate. “You need a policy that says we’re doing this now,” she demanded. Instead, the Union and the SPD said the coal should go on for another 17 years. The grand coalition did not manage to finally take the path towards climate neutrality. “You screwed it up,” said the Green leader to the previous ruling parties. If the GroKo continues, “climate protection will not work”. Climate protection must be the focus of the next federal government, there must even be a “climate government”.

The coal phase-out must be brought forward to 2030, said Baerbock. The Union and FDP are of the opinion that the market will regulate climate protection. But: “The market doesn’t care about people,” says Baerbock. Even with the SPD, she sees no course in climate policy.

Weidel: Government leaves “renovation case”

AfD parliamentary group leader Alice Weidel criticized the government sharply. Merkel’s successor will be left with a “restructuring case”, the country is “insecure and divided”. Germany has the “highest mountain of debt in post-war history”. The “misguided climate protection and energy transition policy” will also cost the citizens dearly. By switching off coal and nuclear power plants at the same time, the industrial nation of Germany is robbed of its “lifeblood”.

With a view to the Corona crisis, Weidel accused the grand coalition of having “broken promises” again. The government originally said that the corona requirements would end as soon as everyone was offered a vaccination. The subject of vaccination is an individual decision and is the responsibility of each individual. The government, on the other hand, has “de facto compulsory vaccination,” according to the AfD parliamentary leader.

Lindner wants to “unleash” private capital

The FDP chairman Christian Lindner accused the coalition of the Union and the SPD of failing to set the course for economic and social modernization. “At the end of her chancellorship, our country is not in the constitution that should meet our requirements,” said Lindner to Chancellor Merkel. “Four years ago it was called a Germany in which we live well and happily. Today, continuity would be the greatest risk for our country, because it cannot stay the way it is.”

For the modernization of Germany there must be a functioning and digitized administration and at the same time an unleashing of private initiative and private capital. “We are facing decisions about direction in this country. Our message is clear: freedom from the state, profit from distribution and more joy in inventing than in prohibiting,” said Lindner.

Bartsch speaks out in favor of an alliance with the SPD and the Greens

Left parliamentary group leader Dietmar Bartsch also gave the outgoing federal government a bad report. The social inequality in Germany has increased continuously in the past few years, said Bartsch. Crises are not resolved, only managed, ministers are “dragged through to the end” without being held accountable. Child poverty in Germany has risen, wages and pensions are no longer sufficient for a normal life. “We need relief for low-wage earners and the middle class,” said Bartsch.

The left-wing politician also spoke out in favor of an alliance with the SPD and the Greens after the federal election. It is about a direction election on September 26, he said in the Bundestag. “It is better to govern well with the left than to govern wrongly with Lindner.” Four years ago, the FDP leader Lindner justified the exit from the “Jamaica” sounding with the words: “It is better not to govern than to govern wrongly.”

Election clash in the Bundestag

Christopher Jähnert, ARD Berlin, September 7, 2021 1:22 p.m.

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