In the regional elections last weekend in two German states, German farmers voted widely for Chancellor Angela Merkel's CDU, but less than four years ago.
German peasants in the southwest of Germany may still choose twice as much as the average for the Christian Democrats, but they are also increasingly turning to parties on the flanks.
In Baden-Württemberg and Rhineland-Palatinate, farmers voted 55% and 56% respectively for the CDU, against an average of 24.1 and 27.7 percent. In other professions such as civil servants, shopkeepers or workers, the differences are much smaller.
In Baden-Württemberg, it is also striking that one in ten farmers vote for the extreme right-wing AfD, one in ten for the left-wing SPD, and two in ten choose the Greens.
After the two elections one thing is clear: the CDU is indeed doing worse as expected than four years ago. There are three reasons for this: if you want green, choose the original, not the CDU. Voters who want to be bourgeois and economically liberal are increasingly opting for the FDP (Baden-Württemberg) or Free Voters (Rhineland-Palatinate). Germans who want to continue Angela Merkel's course choose the CDU. Only there are fewer and fewer ……
The poor ballot box result has rekindled the discussion at the CDU about the course and the succession of Merkel: middle course or center-right. The 'grand coalition' with the left-wing SPD does not suit all CDU voters.
Last year Armin Laschet (59) became CDU party chairman; he is Prime Minister of North Rhine-Westphalia and belongs to the liberal CDU wing. This bad ballot box result makes it uncertain whether the CDU will be able to put him forward as the new chancellor later this year, or whether an SPD-FDP Green Coalition will be set up.
The ballot box results will undoubtedly also be discussed on Wednesday at the conference of LNV minister Julia Klöckner (CDU) with the regional agriculture ministers of the sixteen German states. In Germany, much of the rural agricultural policy has been transferred to the federal states. In half of the federal states there is no CDU member of agriculture. As a result, it is highly uncertain whether Klöckner will be able to modernize the German agricultural law before the national elections.