With just three days till polling day, Germany’s election is wide open. Rarely has such a crucial democratic exercise been tinged by so much uncertainty. Never before have Germans faced such a broad spectrum of possible electoral outcomes.
Angela Merkel is quitting the political battlefield and the army of voters the chancellor once commanded is now up for grabs. Her departure, after 16 years in power, has disrupted a system that once seemed the model of stability.
“For so many people the primary loyalty was to Merkel — and now she’s going,” says Andrea Römmele, professor of communication in politics at the Hertie School in Berlin. As a result, “we have an extremely high volatility among voters — more than 50 per cent of them are open in all directions.”
Merkel’s party, the Christian Democratic Union, is floundering, unsure about what to do and where to go next. Its rivals, the Social Democrats, are on a roll, with a commanding lead in the polls. But the SPD, like the CDU and its Bavarian sister party the Christian Social Union, faces an uncertain future. Germany’s old model of two dominant big-tent parties is being replaced by something much more fragmented.
Arne Jungjohann, political scientist at the Green Academy of the Heinrich Böll Foundation, discusses the key issues at stake in the German federal election on @SquawkBoxEurope with @GeoffCutmore and @AnnetteCNBC https://t.co/KGx4hiCH8M
— CNBC Int'l PR (@cnbcipr) September 24, 2021