Parliamentary Digest 2nd October: Budget week and 30 years of German unity

This week was the budget debate week, with 4 days of debate in the Bundestag. Saturday was also the 30th anniversary of German reunification. Finance Minister Olaf Scholz (SPD) introduced the budget for 2021 on Tuesday and there was a general debate. This was followed by debates by department over the next three days, as … Continue reading Parliamentary Digest 2nd October: Budget week and 30 years of German unity

News Digest 24th July

EU Summit The first EU summit of Germany's Presidency was a tough five day affair - the second longest summit ever. The EU countries met to agree the budget for the next seven years: the planned corona recovery program of 750 billion euros was to be added to the budget, taking the figure to … Continue reading News Digest 24th July

News Digest 17th July

The K question and the CDU leadership As discussed in the News Digest last week, in the coming months the parties will be choosing their Chancellor candidates for the federal election next year and the CDU is also due to elect its new leader in December. In February, the current CDU chair Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer announced … Continue reading News Digest 17th July

News Digest 10th July

EU presidency On Wednesday, Angela Merkel gave a speech to the EU parliament in Brussels setting out the programme for the German Presidency of the EU. Merkel spoke twice as long as the allotted time without having her microphone turned off after 10 minutes, as is usual practice - the Welt commented, "Merkel is Merkel … Continue reading News Digest 10th July

News Digest 3rd July

European Presidency Germany's Presidency of the European Union started this week and will have European recovery in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic as a central theme. The EU is planning a 750 billion euro grant and loan rescue plan. However there are deep divisions in Europe about the size and scope of the rescue … Continue reading News Digest 3rd July

Jens Spahn: “Chancellor in the wings”

Following Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer's announcement that she is resigning as leader of the conservative CDU, Health Minister Jens Spahn, a hope bearer for many on the right of the party, was widely tipped to throw his hat into the ring. Instead, in February he surprisingly teamed up with the 'continuity candidate', Armin Laschet, as Laschet's deputy. … Continue reading Jens Spahn: “Chancellor in the wings”

News Digest 10th April

Corona crisis By Monday, the number of confirmed infections had hit 100,000, with 1,600 deaths; by Friday morning this had risen to over 118,000 cases, with 2,500 deaths (2.1%). The doubling rate passed 12 days - the figure at which the government said they would discuss easing restrictions on daily life. Although the rate of … Continue reading News Digest 10th April

Corona crisis: political winners and losers

CDU/CSU Union After plummeting to a historic low of 26%  before the corona crisis, the conservative CDU/CSU Union is currently polling on at least 34% (and as high as 38% in one poll) in an extraordinary turnaround. The government’s handling of the crisis is widely supported, with 72% approving. This is true of supporters of … Continue reading Corona crisis: political winners and losers

News Digest 13th March

Corona virus Concern about the virus accelerated this week, with the government moving into the delay phase of response. On the same day that WHO declared a worldwide pandemic, Chancellor Merkel announced that 60%-70% of the German population could get the virus. By Friday, the number of confirmed cases had hit 3,000, with thousands more … Continue reading News Digest 13th March

Armin Laschet: the continuity candidate of ‘measure and middle’

Shortly before the current leader of Germany's CDU, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, announced she was stepping down, Armin Laschet joked, "Is Germany ready for a male Chancellor?" Not long after that, the 58 year old Prime Minister of Germany's largest state, North-Rhine Westphalia (NRW), surprised many by making his bid to be CDU leader. Armin LaschetPhoto: Sandro … Continue reading Armin Laschet: the continuity candidate of ‘measure and middle’