From the point of view of the Saxon Prime Minister Michael Kretschmer, the debate about the Union's candidacy for chancellor has already been resolved in favor of the CDU leader Friedrich Merz. When asked whether the K question had already been decided, the CDU politician told the Funke media group: "Yes, I think so." He continued: "Friedrich Merz is chairman of the CDU and the Union parliamentary group in the Bundestag - and is very supported by Markus Söder, Alexander Dobrindt and me in running for office," said Kretschmer.
The official decision will be made in the fall, said Kretschmer. “And it clearly starts after the state elections.” In September, new state parliaments will be elected in Saxony, Thuringia and Brandenburg.
Wüst warns against premature debates
Only at the weekend, North Rhine-Westphalia's Prime Minister Hendrik Wüst (CDU) warned the Union against premature debates about the candidacy for chancellor - and avoided a commitment to Merz. When asked whether he would like Merz to be his candidate for chancellor, Wüst told "Bild am Sonntag": "I hope that we as a Union don't make things too easy for the chaos traffic light by leading personnel debates at an inopportune time."
That's why he doesn't contribute to the debate himself. "The CDU and CSU will clarify the question together, as agreed, in the year before the federal election."
CSU regional group leader Alexander Dobrindt recently confirmed that Merz was a clear favorite in the race for the candidacy for chancellor.
The next federal election will take place regularly in autumn 2025. In 2021, Bavaria's Prime Minister Markus Söder left the Union's candidacy for chancellor to the then CDU leader Armin Laschet after a bitter power struggle. With the Christian Democrats, Wüst has not yet expressed any open ambitions to run for chancellor, but he has not denied them either. In August, Söder spoke out in favor of choosing the Union chancellor candidate only after the eastern elections in 2024.