'She's desperate!' Major Italian newspaper wades into German election as it mocks Merkel


The Milanese daily, writing about the upcoming German federal elections, called her campaign presence “desperate” as she accompanied CDU chancellor candidate Armin Laschet in the northern city of Stralsund. The campaign rally is one of Mr Laschet’s final opportunities to bolster his popularity ahead of the federal election this weekend.

Mr Laschet, 60, is the hope of the Christian Democratic Union – Ms Merkel’s party – for Sunday’s election.

He has, however, lagged behind his main opposition, Olaf Scholz, in recent polls.

One of the oldest papers in Italy, Corriere della Sera said about the rally: “It is a desperate maneuver by Merkel.”

They continued she “has had to descend from Olympus, to which she had withdrawn during the entire election campaign, to show her support for a candidate and a party to which she may have never really belonged.”

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Corriere della Sera then pointed to a comment made by Ms Merkel a number of weeks ago, in which she described that “the party is close” to her.

They reported that she then “noticed the faux paux” before adding “and I am part of it.”

German news outlet, Merkur.de, described Ms Merkel’s likely successor in the CDU as “uncharismatic,” and picked up on Corriere della Sera’s pessimistic view of his electoral success.

They said: “Corriere della Sera from Italy believes Laschet has the lowest chance of victory: in addition to “sensational failures,” the NRW state chief neither knew how to mobilise moderate voters, nor how to “distinguish himself as the true heir of Angela Merkel’s votes.”

Angela Merkel’s departure from political prominence in Europe has prompted politicians and experts to consider what a post-Merkel future looks like in Europe.

Some analysts see this as a big opportunity for European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen, to fill the space which Angela Merkel is soon to leave.

A political expert told Express.co.uk that Italy could become a third power in Europe after Angela Merkel’s exit from European politics.

Dr Alim Baluch from the University of Bath said: “The alliance (Franco-German) will become even more important because of Brexit, and maybe this will get on other countries’ nerves.

“Maybe Germany and France together have to find a third country — Italy has a big economy and a lot of people.

“So, maybe the rest of the EU feels dominated by the Franco-German alliance and that might, going forward, be a problem.”

Additional reporting by Monika Pallenberg.


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