Corona not only dominates our everyday life, but also political operations. Now the CDU has postponed its electoral party conference – while important questions for the three presidential candidates remain unanswered.
Seen in the light of day, the CDU could have had doubts earlier as to whether it would be wise to hold a party conference in Stuttgart with 1,001 delegates. The first concession was the purring of three days into a single day. The second step took place when there was no other way. The Chancellor was once again way ahead of the decision-makers in her party.
To listen carefully to the Chancellor would have been enough. Angela Merkel implores us to stay at home, meet as few people as possible, and be careful. Your party friends might have felt compelled to draw the conclusions. You do not have. Maybe they didn’t want to either. Let them go. The whole last week it went back and forth: should we, should we not, can we even afford it, probably not, what will people say.
What the three CDU candidates can learn from Merkel
What people say is always a good question in politics. Who do people listen to is the more important question. They apparently still listen to the Chancellor and what is interesting is the dialogue that is going on and from which all three candidates can learn something.
It depends on each individual, the Chancellor keeps telling us. We can help curb the rapid spread, as we have done before. As far as you can see, the appeal has reached the vast majority, apart from 600 fetish partygoers in Berlin and the small cluster of mask-free corona deniers who are having a hard time sticking to denial these days.
Party conferences serve internal democracy
For us as individuals, everyday life is the greatest possible source of infection. Everyday life is anarchy. We don’t choose who we meet. We meet on buses and trains, regional and long-distance trains. The fuller they are, the closer we get to each other. The more trains go and the more of us there are inside, the busier the stations are. Each of us can only hope that the others have not been to fetish parties or secret gatherings beforehand and infect us, despite the mask, but without a safety distance that cannot be kept in larger crowds.
Corona keeps us under a spell. Corona determines our life. Of course, it also restricts our democracy, in that the executive decides and the legislature can usually only watch. Party congresses in regular succession serve internal democracy. The CDU needs a new chairman, it didn’t just know that yesterday. It’s been a damn long time since AKK said, I don’t want to be chairman anymore, you have to look for someone else. And now Corona is screwing up the self-celebration including the election of a new chairman, who at the same time, at least in theory, can be the next chancellor.
That is the difference between Merkel and Trump
Germany is in a comparable position to America. I assume Trump will leave and Biden will come. We know from Biden that he should be a nice person and a product of the old political system. Trump will only miss his fans, that is the difference to Angela Merkel, who many of us will still sorely miss when she has disappeared to her dacha and lets her successor do what she did for 16 years. 16 years.
Armin Laschet is also a nice person like Biden. Nice is not a special criterion for chancellorship. Friedrich Merz doesn’t look nice, but pithy, but above all like yesterday. Norbert Röttgen tries to be nice, but is the eternal class representative who knows everything and nobody really likes.
What kind of conservatism do you advocate?
Nobody wants to know from Joe Biden how he wants to define his party and where he intends to lead the country. Our three matadors do not ask for the obvious. The obvious would be answers to such questions: What kind of conservatism do you advocate? How social should the market economy be and how national should it be, so that the CDU should permanently dig the water away from the AfD, or should it just go on as if Angela Merkel were still there?
And what do you actually say about Wirecard, the big air number that was the big Dax number yesterday? And should the indictment against Audi boss Rupert Stadler and his three co-defendants actually set a precedent, for example in the VW case? Apart from questions about the consequences of the Navalny poisoning case – and should the Nord Stream 2 be stopped?
The CDU is grumbling about the mild candidates
Corona unfortunately also prevents such obvious questions to candidates who are applying for one office and have the other office in which Angela Merkel still ruled. The three don’t seem to regret that. The real tragedy is that we are all under-challenged, we voters, we have to decide in September, not just the CDU, which grumbles and rumbles about the lukewarm candidates.
Chancellors don’t have to be intellectuals. They may be nice or not, above all they have to really want what they strive for: it doesn’t work without a bit of power. And it would be really appropriate for them to seriously talk about where they want to lead their party and the country, in Europe, in NATO. The application speech at the party congress must also be an application speech for the chancellorship, so that we know what to make of this chairman, who wants to inherit Angela Merkel.
Now they have postponed the party conference. To spring. As a face-to-face event, which is easy to understand. Then there will be two elections in Baden-Württemberg and Rhineland-Palatinate. Nice something going on. Let’s see whether Corona plays along in the end or messes everything up again.