x
Breaking News
0

Merkel's rival insists he can win German election, attacks Trump

WorldAug 13, 2017 11:22AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
 
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO - Germany's Social Democratic Party candidate for chancellor Schulz talks during a news conference at Chigi Palace in Rome

By Gernot Heller

BERLIN (Reuters) - Chancellor Angela Merkel's main challenger, Martin Schulz, labeled U.S. President Donald Trump "irresponsible" on Sunday and insisted he could still win Germany's Sept. 24 election despite languishing in polls.

Schulz, leader of the left-leaning Social Democratic Party (SPD), said he would not take issue with Merkel's approach to handling the dispute between the United States and North Korea as Germany should stand united.

But he could not resist a dig at Trump, whom he described to the broadcaster ZDF as "this irresponsible man in the White House".

"What worries me is that an American president ... is sinking to the level of a North Korean dictator," Schulz added in a separate interview with the RTL channel.

On Friday, Merkel said there was no military solution to the North Korea issue, adding that "an escalation of the rhetoric is the wrong answer".

Six weeks out from the election, an Emnid opinion poll for Sunday's Bild am Sonntag newspaper put support for Schulz's SPD at 24 percent, far behind Merkel's conservative bloc, on 38 percent.

The two parties now rule in a "grand coalition", led by Merkel's conservatives. Despite the conservatives' big lead in surveys, a fractured political landscape could make it hard to form other viable coalitions.

Schulz insisted he could still win the election, telling ZDF: "I reckon I've got a good chance." Asked about the possibility of another grand coalition, he replied: "I have nothing against a grand coalition under my leadership."

The Emnid poll put support for the far-left Left party at 10 percent, with the pro-business Free Democrats (FDP) and the anti-immigration Alternative for Germany (AfD) both on 8 percent, and the environmentalist Greens on 7.

CAR MAKERS IN THE SPOTLIGHT

A day after Merkel rounded on Germany's auto executives for squandering trust in the sector, Schulz accused them of putting the industry at risk by failing to plan for the future.

The fate of the auto sector, Germany's biggest exporter and provider of some 800,000 jobs, has become a hot election issue as politicians accuse executives and each other of failing to find an adequate response to a scandal over emissions.

The scandal blew up almost two years ago when Volkswagen (DE:VOWG_p) admitted to cheating U.S. emissions tests, throwing the spotlight on a major source of pollution and increasing the pressure for a decisive switch to alternative fuels.

"The problem is, we are living through a situation in Germany in which managers worth millions at VW, at Daimler , have fallen asleep and forgotten the future," Schulz told ZDF.

VW, along with fellow German car makers BMW (DE:BMWG), Daimler (DE:DAIGn), Audi (DE:NSUG) and Porsche, are also being investigated by European regulators for alleged anti-competitive collusion.

Trade unionists at VW have urged politicians not to exploit its problems for political gain.

Car bosses agreed this month to overhaul engine software on 5.3 million diesel cars to cut pollution.

Former chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, himself a former member of VW's supervisory board, accused Merkel of neglecting her duties by going on holiday rather than chairing the emissions talks with industry bosses.

"I don't want to spoil anyone's holiday. But here I would have taken charge personally. It is all far too important," Schroeder, a Social Democrat whom Merkel defeated in 2005, told the Swiss tabloid newspaper Blick.

Merkel's rival insists he can win German election, attacks Trump
 

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind: 

  • Enrich the conversation
  • Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed.
  • Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically.
  •  Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and links within a comment will be removed
  • Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user.
  • Don’t Monopolize the Conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also believe strongly in giving everyone a chance to air their thoughts. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at Investing.com’s discretion.

 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Write your thoughts here
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
Post
Post also to:
1000
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
Post 1000
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
 
 
 
Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Add Chart to Comment
Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.
Continue with Google
or
Sign up with Email