German election LIVE: Juncker breaks silence in bid to swing vote – battle for EU begins

German election: Expert analyses threat of ‘fake news’

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The former European Commission President was succeeded by Ursula von der Leyen in 2019 having held the position in Brussels for five years, which, means he can now give his support behind a political party without causing a stir, and he has done exactly that after telling Politico “I believe it would be good if Armin Laschet became Chancellor”.

He said: “From a European point of view, it’s not such an exciting question” whether Laschet or the Social Democrats’ Olaf Scholz will win: “Both Scholz and Laschet are grounded Europeans,” 

But Mr Juncker admitted that regardless of the outcome on election night, Germany’s heavy influence throughout the EU would remain undiminished.

He added: “I don’t think the election will lead to a deficit of influence for Germany,”

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Juncker praises Merkel for 16 years as Chancellor

Mr Juncker also praised Angela Merkel for her 16 years as Chancellor saying she “listened to everyone- small, medium, big countries, she never made any distinction.”

He said she had “European political charm” as she always followed political debate in other countries “more closely”. 

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