Co-leader of the Greens defends contested candidate for Chancellor | World information

BERLIN (Reuters) – The Greens co-leader defended the party’s candidacy for chancellor in next month’s general election on Sunday, rejecting proposals that he should replace her after making a number of costly mistakes.

In the polls, the ecologists briefly overtook the conservative bloc of Chancellor Angela Merkel after they named Annalena Baerbock as their candidate for chancellor in April, but have since declined.

Baerbock’s flawed campaign contains errors in her résumé and a Christmas bonus scandal that she did not disclose to parliament. Baerbock also said sexist reviews are holding them back.

“Ms. Baerbock is suitable for the Chancellery, and our job is to make sure that the Greens are strong,” said the party’s co-leader, Robert Habeck, on ZDF.

When asked whether the Greens should replace Baerbock with him as candidate for Chancellor, Habeck replied: “No, this is not a debate.”

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In addition, the party will be excluded from the vote in the federal election on September 26th in Saarland due to irregularities in the selection of the state candidates after internal disputes.

“The election campaign of the Greens had a few problems, but … I’m looking forward to August and September,” said Habeck, who is party leader with Baerbock. “Everything is possible.”

An opinion poll published on Sunday showed that the left-wing Social Democrats (SPD) are on par with the Greens with 18%, behind Merkel’s conservatives with 26%. Merkel, in office since 2005, wants to resign after the election.

The INSA survey showed that the SPD candidate Olaf Scholz was clearly ahead in a hypothetical direct election for Chancellor with 27% approval. The conservative Armin Laschet stunted with 14%, one point ahead of Baerbock with 13%.

The Greens presented a “climate protection emergency program” on Tuesday with which they want to reset their campaign.

(Writing by Paul Carrel; Editing by Christina Fincher)

Copyright 2021 Thomson Reuters.

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