Before the chancellor candidate triumph, the CSU increased the pressure on Armin Laschet again.

What's the strategy behind it?

Bavaria first?

Anna-Lena Ripperger

Editor in politics.

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The CSU panics.

The remark that General Secretary Blume has now made in the magazine Spiegel that you would be better off with Söder shows that. The displeasure with the election campaign is understandable in view of the polls.

But the apparently widespread perception in the CSU leadership that you achieve something positive if you increase the pressure, I think is wrong.

At the same time, of course, the CSU is already protecting itself for the coming weeks.

The CSU is already working on the explanation for the disaster?

It is spreading two messages.

One is: We have always known it.

Söder would have been the better candidate, Laschet and the Konrad-Adenauer-Haus made mistakes.

The other is: We did support the election campaign.

We will hear that at the party congress.

And that is definitely a message to your own people.

There are some who accuse the party leadership of only half-heartedly campaigning.

So what the CSU is doing is again something meandering, like it was back then with the migration issue.

With similar disastrous consequences for the relationship between the sister parties as in 2018?

I do not think that this will lead to major upheavals between the sister parties.

Söder and the CSU do not want to damage the CDU and Laschet on purpose.

They care about to be or not to be.

In the end, the bigger problem with a poor election result is the CDU.

Why the CDU?

Those in the party who would have preferred to listen to the grassroots and make Söder a candidate are then opposed to those who pushed Laschet forward through the party committees.

If the election result is actually catastrophic, his party friends will saw him off themselves, they won't need the CSU for that.

Not even as a scapegoat?

Some might say: The CSU put a nice egg in our nest with their taunts. But of course the CDU also has something to reproach itself for. The backing that came up was not so abundant. Angela Merkel only spoke out clearly in favor of Laschet three weeks before the election. It was already clear that with him one would decide in favor of the less hands-on campaigner. And even if the result is not that bad in the end, the party will have to clarify how it will decide future personnel issues: through the committees and established institutions or through the grassroots and possibly even a membership decision?

Do you really believe that none of the taunts will stick to Söder in the end?

Since the trial of strength for the candidacy for chancellor, hasn't he shown earlier that Seehofer's "filthiness" accusation is true?

I don't want to protect Söder.

It is certainly incredibly difficult for him to give in because he considers himself the best, or at least the better candidate.

And the previous appearance of Laschet in the election campaign should confirm him.

But to turn it into a weakness of character now, I wouldn't go that far.

And what he says about the election campaign is shared in large parts of the CDU.

But that doesn't make it any better that he pronounces it.

In fact, Söder has perfected a form of criticism that is supposedly constructive, but in reality is destructive, a poisoned package, so to speak, that is put in front of the door of the person concerned, in this case Laschet. But Söder also appears like this to his cabinet. You can almost be grateful that Laschet has such a balanced disposition and that he can take it well. It is not even clear whether Söder would really have been a better election campaign for the Union. Everything he'd ever said about migration would have been hacked into. But the CSU cultivates the fiction of the "candidate of hearts". The comparison with the actual candidate can only go in one direction - nobody can beat the candidate of the heart.

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