German chancellor denies her authority is on the wane after concessions made to coalition partner
Angela Merkel has defended “painful” concessions she made to the Social Democrats (SPD) to win a fourth term as German chancellor and said criticism from conservatives was not a sign her authority was waning.
Asked whether she was planning to groom a successor to lead the Christian Democrats (CDU) in the next election, Merkel said she wanted a younger generation from her party to fill ministerial posts in a renewed coalition with the SPD.
Martin Schulz’s speech greeted with sarcastic applause and ovations for party leader’s critics
Germany has inched a step closer to forming a new government after the centre-left Social Democratic party (SPD) gave its lukewarm endorsement for a renewed Angela Merkel-led “grand coalition”.
At a special SPD congress in Bonn that welcomed a speech by the party’s leader, Martin Schulz, with sarcastic applause and saw standing ovations for his fiercest critics, 56% of the party’s delegates voted in favour of moving on to the second and final stage of coalition talks with Merkel’s centre-right Christian Democratic Union (CDU).
German party’s younger members think coalition would be disastrous move
Germany’s young social democrats are demanding a clean break with Angela Merkel’s conservatives before a crucial vote on Sunday that will decide the country’s political future.
The SPD leadership, which unanimously backs entering a “grand coalition” with centre-right parties (the so-called GroKo), and the youth wing of the party (the Jusos) were making last-ditch scrambles for support on Saturday among the 600 delegates eligible to vote at a special party conference in Bonn. The deal they are voting on has the potential to topple both Merkel and SPD leader Martin Schulz.