uAccording to the CDU chairman, Union faction leader Friedrich Merz and Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) have cleared up a month-long upset. “The Chancellor and I had an extensive dinner together, and that was rightly not in the newspaper the next day,” said Merz in an interview with the German Press Agency in Berlin. He added: “We had a reasonable, good conversation, as it should be between Democrats.”
“After my visit to Kyiv at the beginning of May, the Federal Government and the Chancellor initially stopped all communication with us,” said Merz, who had been trying to get a meal with the Chancellor for a long time. “It took a certain amount of effort to restore it.” Since the beginning of November “normal talks between the opposition and the government have resumed”.
In the government there was obviously “a – in my opinion – completely unnecessary and implausible irritation that I traveled to Kyiv and didn’t wait for the Chancellor to make his way there,” said Merz. The CDU politician described his current dealings with Scholz with the words: “It’s professional, and it’s also possible that we’re currently talking to each other sensibly.”
In view of the war of aggression against Ukraine launched by Russian President Vladimir Putin on February 24, Merz spoke of a “year in a state of emergency” for the government as well. “Which doesn’t mean that we don’t criticize the government very specifically,” he added at the same time. A lot of things were set in motion much too late by the traffic light, “many of these decisions are now simply very poorly made,” complained the CDU chairman.
Rarely as trusting as now
Merz said of his relationship with CSU leader Markus Söder and the Bavarian sister party: “There have rarely been phases where the CDU and CSU have worked together as well and trustingly as they do now.” To speculate about the 2025 federal election, he said in response to a corresponding question. “Our task now is to do proper work in Parliament.”
The CDU will work on the subject of economy, energy and climate at the retreat of its top management in Weimar in January. “I want the party to focus on a holistic, integrated approach to these issues. Economy, energy and climate simply belong together.”