General elections have been needed – five months ago -, failed government negotiations with liberals and greens, a historic rectification of the Social Democratic Party (SPD) – in principle, the reediting of the grand coalition – and finally, the extraordinary congress of the CDU to put at last the cornerstone of the coalition agreement between Social Democrats and Conservatives and facilitate the fourth consecutive term of Angela Merkel. The next and final step is pending the binding consultation between the almost half million members of the SPD, whose results will be announced next Sunday. For the time being, conservatives have been the first to do their homework. The Chancellor’s party has overwhelmingly backed the pact already agreed with the SPD: with only 27 votes against a total of nearly 1,000, the most voted formation in the last elections on September 24 paves the way for the country can count on an Executive after more than four months of a Cabinet in office.
The vote by show of hands was preceded by a speech in which the chancellor made a self-criticism and sent a message in favor of renewal within the party. The foreign minister acknowledged that the results obtained in the general elections were not as expected for reasons ranging from the “concern” that generated in the population the reception of hundreds of thousands of refugees, to the “political instability” of neighboring countries and in Europe . Merkel’s party was the most voted but lost more than two million votes in favor of the liberals and right-wingers. Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, new secretary general of the German Christian Democratic Union, will be precisely who, according to the plans of the chancellor , must lead that change of course. Kramp-Karrenbauer, known as AKK, was elected with 98.8 percent of the votes as the new “number two” of the party, a position from which she has the most paved way to definitively run as Merkel’s successor.
But nothing indicates that it will be easy. New faces within the party, like Jens Spahn, future minister of Health, appear in the pools to lead the party in the future. With his neoliberal line, more nationalistic and heeled to the right, Spahn is seen as the hope of the critics of Merkel and clashes with that of AKK, catholic at all costs, of a social nature and of a more moderate mood. In fact, Kramp-Karrenbauer already has the nickname of “mini-Merkel”.