Angela Merkel exit as German Chancellor in chaos as CDU successor faces calls to step down

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The conservative candidate to replace Angela Merkel as Chancellor Armin Laschet is in a fight for his political life after Sunday’s election left the 60-year-old needing to form a ruling coalition with the Greens and liberal Free Democrats in order to maintain the CDU’s hold on power in Germany. However, defeat at the hands of the center-left Social Democrats (SPD) has left many CDU supporters and politicians calling for Mr Laschet to step down.

EuroNews correspondent Lena Roche said: “The CDU supporters according to this poll said, I mean 50 percent of them said that they wanted him to step down.

“So that is already pretty bad.

“But there is also a lot of critics from inside his own party.

“Many conservative politicians are very frustrated about this historically bad result.”

She added: “And they make him responsible for it.”

Mr Laschet has led the CDU to their first national election defeat since 2002.

The centre-left Social Democrats (SPD) narrowly beat the conservatives in Sunday’s election with  25.7% of the vote ahead of 24.1% for the CDU

Mr Laschet must now try to form a ruling coalition with the Greens and liberal Free Democrats or else see his political career collapse.

He never made an impression,” Mr Irmer added.

“If you want to win an election, you need some members who are really ardent about the candidate in the best sense of the word, who go out on the streets with enthusiasm and feel that they’re making a stand for something.

“And the enthusiasm for Laschet as a candidate was — I’ll formulate this very elegantly — restrained.”

An opinion poll conducted by Infratest Dimap for ARD television showed just 16 percent wanted Mr Laschet to become the next chancellor.

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