The depth of German opposition to Angela Merkel’s response to the migrant crisis is worse than previously thought, with a poll finding a third of respondents wanting her resignation.
An INSA poll for the website of German news magazine FOCUS does find some support for Chancellor Merkel. In part it is found, as might be expected, in her own party – the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) of Germany – but also from the Greens. This led the head of INSA, Hermann Binkert, to comment:
“In addition to her own voters, Greens in particular support the Chancellor. In relation to the refugee issue Merkel can rely on them as substantive pillars of a future black-green [CDU/Green] alliance.”
More concerning for Mrs Merkel, INSA’s Mr Binkert pointed out that her opponents are not only non-voters but include active Alternative for Germany (AfD) and Free Democratic Party (FDP) voters.
Over all, 33 per cent of respondents told INSA the increasingly embattled chancellor should resign (although when looked at geographically 38 per cent of East Germans thought she should go, with 32 per cent from the West agreeing). Across Germany 52 per cent do not think she should go and 15 per cent had no opinion.
The highest opposition to Mrs Merkel is found in the growing ranks of the AfD. 86 per cent of supporters of the anti-Euro party, which has been staging protests against the government’s migrant policy as previously reported by Breitbart London, believe Mrs Merkel should leave office.
38 per cent of supporters of The Left and 39 per cent of the classically liberal FDP want the Chancellor to resign over her handling of the migrant crisis. So too, do 30 per cent of the Social Democratic Party (SPD).
Only 14 per cent of supporters of the Union (the Chancellor’s own CDU/Christian Social Union governing coalition) want to see Mrs Merkel resigning, and only 20 per cent of the Greens.
For those who do not choose to vote, 44 per cent believe the Chancellor should resign because of her migrant policy. 30 per cent of non-voters think she should stay in office and 26 per cent do not have an opinion on Mrs Merkel’s political fate.
The next federal election in Germany is not due to take place until the second half of 2017 (some time from late August to late October that year, most likely in late September) so Mrs Merkel does have time to stem the drop in support for her party. However, with the first of the eight state parliament elections taking place before the national election happening in March next year, there is a risk that opposition to her may gain momentum.
One of the first elections, on 13 March 2016, is in Baden-Württemberg. With that state being a CDU stronghold for the best part of 60 years, where despite being in opposition to an SPD/Green coalition they won at 60 seats 24 more than the next party in 2011, it will be interesting to see whether Mrs Merkel’s national policies have any effect on that local election.