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European Elections

‘It’s over, Angela’ Shock prediction that Merkel won’t last fourth term as German leader

ANGELA Merkel will not survive her fourth term as chancellor as she tries to rule over an increasingly divided an angry country, a leading expert on German politics has predicted.

Angela MerkelGETTY

Angela Merkel looks set for a fourth term as German chancellor


In a shock opinion piece German and British newspaper columnist Roger Boyes said the Berlin chief is “approaching a moment of hubris” and has vastly overestimated her popularity.The respected columnist, who writes for the Times and German newspaper Der Tagesspiegel, predicted Mrs Merkel will “regret” a recent interview in which she said: “The longer I stay the better I get.”He pointed to a Germany riven with division over key issues including the chancellor’s ill-fated migration policy, the growth of low-paid and part-time work and increasing inner city poverty.

Mr Boyes also accused her of taking her eye off the ball domestically as she strives to create an historic legacy for herself as the saviour of the EU project and the ailing eurozone.
He said the “complaints about her rule are coming thick and fast” and not just from the usual suspects, such as supporters of the far-right AfD, but also from within her own CDU party.
Mrs Merkel is on course to win next month’s election according to opinion polls, though she could struggle to form a coalition and half of voters say they are still undecided, pointing to huge apathy towards her rule.Mr Boyes wrote: “The German chancellor has begun to think of herself as indispensable to her country, to Europe and, although she is careful not to lay public claim to the throne, to the leadership of the free world.“The fact is, in her rush to fulfil some kind of historic destiny as the leader who saved the eurozone, or who fought off European populism, she has neglected the rumbling at the roots.”

The columnist said that public faith in the system had been shaken by the recent emissions scandal, in which it emerged that German carmakers have been cheating on environmental tests.

Every good local policeman knows more than she does about urban decline

Roger Boyes

Mr Boyes said Germans are “rightly proud of their cars and they understandably hate cheats”, adding that the episode had badly impacted on national pride in manufacturing.Immigration has also become a massive issue in German politics ever since Mrs Merkel took the momentous decision to throw open the country’s borders to asylum seekers in 2015.He wrote: “There is real concern about the integration of refugees who many voters see as direct competition for stretched resources. Every terror attack in Europe involving an asylum-seeker heightens the fear.

“It is not for the most part xenophobia that has turned the massive influx of newcomers into a toxic issue for her but rather the feeling that she is out of touch.”

On top of that, whilst Germany is currently experiencing record unemployment its economy has many of the same problems being experienced in Britain, including the poor quality of new jobs being created.

He added: “The pockets of poverty, some of it quite new, the ethnic tensions in towns; all this has passed her by. Every good local policeman knows more than she does about urban decline.”The columnist was also scathing of the chancellor’s lack of passion and energy on the campaign trail, observing that most of her interviews “seem to be conducted under sedation”.

He concluded: “Opinion polls flatter her; they reflect the weakness of her challengers rather than her hidden strengths, just as her star rating in Europe stemmed from a mediocre political field across the continent.

“The polls will certainly narrow before Election Day in four weeks’ time, and there may be a few surprises. If Merkel does survive, in whatever political constellation, my bet is she is unlikely to serve a full term. Tensions in Germany are too acute, her politician’s touch no longer sure.”

http://www.express.co.uk/news/politics/844802/Angela-Merkel-shock-prediction-German-chancellor-survive-fourth-term

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