Merkel humiliation: How Chancellor ‘failed like Theresa May’ in horror comparison

The claim was made by Feli Schoenherr of the Werte Union – a group within Ms Merkel’s CDU who are critical of her leadership. He highlights how the German Chancellor is being presented with a very similar dilemma to that posed to Theresa May during her turbulent tenure as Prime Minister. Threatened by both parties to the right and to the left, Mr Schoenherr says Ms Merkel has not been decisive with her message.

He told “For Merkel this has happened over a long time, while for Theresa May she failed in a short time. For Merkel this developed for quite some time because there was only opposition from the left.

“The left was partnered into three parties – the Social Democrats, The Greens and The Left – and on the right side there was only the CDU.

“Now with the Alternative for Germany (AfD), there is also an opposition on the right so now Merkel’s way of operating won’t work anymore, because you can’t get consensus from both sides.

“For example, saying refugees are welcome, but also that borders must be closed – both things don’t work at the same time just like Remain and Brexit don’t work at the same time.

“We have polarisation now in society, and I think Johnson made a smart move by acknowledging this in the election when he said ‘Get Brexit done’.”

Mrs May took over as leader of the Tories after the 2016 referendum, tasked with one objective – get a Brexit withdrawal deal through Parliament.

Just as Ms Merkel is attempting to do so in her own party today, Mrs May has also dealt with the challenge of uniting warring factions in her party.

But just as the Values Union have consistently challenged Ms Merkel, Mrs May also endured constant criticism from a group within her party during Brexit talks with the EU – the European Research Group (ERG).

The parallels between the two also became apparent at the ballot box.

The Conservtive Party leader was dealt her most humiliating electoral blow in the 2017 general election, where she lost her slim majority after a disastrous campaign.

And in European elections, Mrs May’s party also collapsed securing less than 10 percent of the vote and suffering its worst ever result.

Merkel is heading in a similar direction – In Germany’s 2013 Federal Elections, the AfD, having just been founded, won 810,000 votes winning no seats.

But in the next vote four years later, the party boosted their share to over five million votes, a rise bigger than Ukip’s between 2010-2015.

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In last year’s state elections, Ms Merkel’s party also suffered a huge blow in the Thuringia region – where her CDU party usually dominates.

This time they finished third, behind the AfD in second as Die Linke (The Left) claimed a surprise victory.

Mr Schoenherr believes Merkel could have fended off such a bad result had her party taken a similar response to the Tories under Boris Johnson.

He said: “From what I see in the news Johnson was leaning towards the Brexit crowd while Theresa May was trying to get consensus which didn’t work.

“Johnson was very clever with his clear cut message, and he made a smart move by acknowledging this in the election when he said ‘Get Brexit done’.”

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