In November 2016, Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany, announced her intention to run for the fourth term in the supreme position of the state. Her main opponent is former President of the European Parliament, Social Democrat Martin Schulz. Schulz resigned from office in order to run against Merkel. Elections for Chancellery will be held on September 24, 2017. At the beginning of this year, the situation seemed favorable for Martin Schulz.
According to opinion polls, SPD and CDU had reached equality in voting intentions. In March, Schulz is unanimously elected president of the SPD, becoming officially Merkel’s main rival.
But almost immediately after this historic election, the SPD suffered the first blow during the Saarland state election, where the CDU candidate won 40% of the votes, and the Social Democrats gathered only 29%. This first election was the first test for the main political parties in Germany before the main elections in September.
At the same time, it represents the first failure of the SPD with Schulz in the role of president. Unfortunately for the Social Democrats, the series of electoral defeats does not stop there. After a short period of equality in early polls, the CDU began to catch up. On May 7, Merkel’s party won another victory after elections in Schleswig-Holstein.
But the worst defeat for Schulz comes from the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, the most populous province, considered a stronghold of the SPD. Following this regional election, the Christian Democratic Union won a last significant victory over its opponents 4 months before the decisive election.
After counting all the votes, the CDU obtained 33.0% and the coalition of SPD and Green suffered significant losses.
The SPD is the third and largest election failure this year. These failures cast doubt on Schulz’s chances of replacing Angela Merkel as Chancellor in the September elections.
However, Schulz showed himself optimistic about his chances and urged the party to focus on the main elections.
In the context of these important elections for the future of the largest economy in the EU, it is important to know some of Angela Merkel’s achievements, the country’s most important political personality since 2005.