The Euro Crisis and German Politics

The Opposition Offers Support to Chancellor Angela Merkel

Angela Merkel is under fire for her perceived lack of leadership in the euro crisis.

On Monday, leaders of the Social Democratic Party (SPD) declared at a news conference that it was ready to help her tackle the crisis provided that she pushes for strong, decisive measures to rescue Greece at a special European Union summit this week.

The SPD said it would back her in the parliamentary vote on the second bailout package for Greece this autumn and would even support her in explaining potentially unpopular measures to the German public.

SPD chairman Sigmar Gabriel, parliamentary group leader Frank-Walter Steinmeier and former Finance Minister Peer Steinbrück said they had written to Merkel with a pledge of political support for “a strong and brave political signal.”

Steinbrück, regarded as a potential SPD candidate to challenge Merkel in the next general election in 2013, said the EU’s strategy of merely helping ailing euro members service their debts had failed. “It is important that the summit takes decisions that are comprehensive and strong,” he told a joint news conference with Gabriel and Steinmeier on Monday. “The danger of contagion for other countries is greater than ever.” Greece needs a debt restructuring with a debt cut of 40 to 50 percent, he said.

Source: Spiegel International (July 20)

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3 responses to “The Euro Crisis and German Politics

  1. Michael Gundy

    Delighted to see this degree of intelligent support. Greece, cut loose from the Euro, would be a disaster as a new drachma would devalue down to nothing with the resulting serious civil unrest. Now the Eu can instill some discipline on the other PIIGS in the sty.

  2. Elisabeth Ecker

    As long as Greece is not forced to restructure and totally destroy the domestic economy. Greece needs jobs so that people can pay taxes. Greece also has to tackle its underground economy.