Germany: Merkel’s party to vote on its new leader

Dec 07, 2018, 5:13 AM EST
In October, Angela Merkel announced that she will quit as the party chief but continue as the chancellor.
(Source: EU2017EE Estonian Presidency/flickr)

Germany’s ruling Christian Democratic Union faces its “most momentous” decision in nearly 50 years as more than 1,000 party delegates prepare to elect a successor to Angela Merkel, who has been at the helm of party affairs for 18 years.

Merkel’s protégé and the party’s current general secretary, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, Friedrich Merz, a millionaire businessman, opposed to Merkel’s open-door policy for refugees and Jens Spahn, currently health minister in Merkel’s government, are in the race for the party’s chair, notes The Guardian.

Merkel’s popularity at home waned after her decision to shelter the refugees fleeing violence in the Middle East, and as a result, she suffered humiliating electoral losses recently, writes Al Jazeera. In October, Merkel announced that she will quit as the party chief but continue as the chancellor. 

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