The Merkel Problem: Scholz humiliated as just 11% of Germans expect him to do a better job
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A majority of German citizens do not expect the new Chancellor, Olaf Scholz, to do a better job than the incumbent one. Should Mr Scholz actually be elected Chancellor after his coalition talks with the FDP and the Greens, only 11 percent of Germans expect that he will do a better job at governing than his predecessor Angela Merkel.
This was the result of a survey by the opinion research institute Forsa for the RTL trend barometer.
On the other hand, 20 percent of those surveyed expect the SPD politician to do a worse job than the previous head of government from the CDU. The vast majority of respondents (64 percent) assume that there will be little difference.
That is not really surprising – after all, Scholz has been in the Merkel cabinet since 2018 and is her deputy.
Even among his own supporters, expectations of the possible future Chancellor are not very high: only 19 percent of supporters of the SPD expect better government work from Mr Scholz than from Mrs Merkel, six percent say the opposite.
The vast majority, 71 percent, do not expect a difference.
Union supporters naturally see this more critically, after all, the CDU and CSU would be in the opposition in a traffic light coalition made up of the SPD, Greens and FDP: only eight percent of this group expect Scholz to do better work, 34 percent to do worse and 55 percent to do equally good government work.
The expectations of the supporters of the possible coalition partners of the SPD look more or less similar. 11 (Greens) and nine (FDP) percent expect better work, 15 (Greens) and 26 (FDP) percent expect him to do a worse job. 69 and 61 percent do not expect any major differences compared to the Merkel government.
Interestingly, the expectations of AfD supporters do not differ greatly from those of the traffic light parties: 11 percent of them expect better government work from an SPD chancellor, 15 percent the opposite. 67 percent said neither.
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The coalition negotiations between the SPD, Greens and FDP are in full swing.
So far, observers have assumed that in the end there will be a so-called traffic light coalition, despite the disputes over, for example, climate policy.
Should it actually come to that, Scholz will be elected Chancellor.
The SPD politician would succeed Merkel, who sat in the Chancellery for 16 years.
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Mr Scholz said on Thursday that Germany’s better-than-expected tax revenues and talks held so far between the three parties working to form a new government have increased the chances of sealing a coalition agreement this month.
“There is a lot of leeway (in the budget) that has now even become a bit bigger,” Mr Scholz said when presenting the government’s updated tax revenue estimates.
Asked if he expected parties to overcome policy differences now more easily and seal a coalition agreement before the end of this month, Mr Scholz said he had been confident from the beginning and this confidence had become even stronger now.
The polling institute Forsa surveyed 1,001 people between November 11th and 12th. The margin of error is +/- three percent.
Additional reporting by Monika Pallenberg
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