first_imgIn the last few days and weeks I’ve blogged about the threat to the ruling CDU in Germany posed by this Sunday’s regional election in Hesse and Lower Saxony, and how both the rise of the neo-communists and the alleged racism of Hessian Prime Minister Roland Koch may turn the tide towards the opposition social democrats. Well, I was wrong to claim that the election was certain to get zero coverage abroad.Today’s Independent and Washington Post, as well as yesterday’s FT, all pick up on the threat to (federal) Chancellor Angela Merkel’s ruling party. As the Independent reports, Merkel came over to my temporary home of Frankfurt last night to speak in front of the grand opera house in the centre of town. It’s the major city of Hesse (10% of the state’s 6 million inhabitants live here), so the Frankfurters’ votes are certainly, erm, worth their mustard. Sadly for her, they through ketchup back in her face, and called for “Nazis out” in reference to her support for CDU colleague Koch’s attack on foreign criminals – he’s being called a “racist who talks shit” for the sin of mentioning crime problems among the immigrant community and suggesting the introduction of boot camps. Whatever the truth of his statements, Koch’s shot himself in the foot and handed votes to the SPD and far-left parties (the neo-communist Die Linke are on a massive 10%, according to one poll — that’s more a bigger share than the Greens, the SNP, Respect, Plaid Cymru, UKIP, the BNP and Sinn Fein got put together in the UK general election in 2005). It looks like his latest contribution to the Hessian melting pot may spell the end for the CDU’s very short political honeymoon.Cherwell 24 is not responsible for the content of external linkslast_img