Karin Prien (CDU): “It’s not enough to taboo or demonize AfD positions” | EUROtoday

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Okayarin Prien has been the Minister of Education of Schleswig-Holstein since June 2017. The 58-year-old has been vice-chair of the federal CDU since January 2022.

WELT: Ms. Prien, a couple of days aside – how do you price the WELT TV duel between the CDU's high candidate within the Thuringian state election, Mario Voigt, and the right-wing extremist AfD candidate Björn Höcke?

Karin Prien: Mario Voigt bravely took a giant threat in an distinctive political scenario in Thuringia, and I feel he did it rather well. Voigt helped to confront the fascist Höcke when it comes to content material and to demystify him as whiny. It is now clear to the individuals of Thuringia that there’s a better option for the workplace of Prime Minister in Mario Voigt.

Karin Prien

Karin Prien

Quelle: image alliance/dpa/Marcus Brandt

WELT: If you have a look at the reactions to this tv duel, each camps nonetheless really feel confirmed in the long run. The AfD thinks that Höcke was nice, the Union applauds Voigt. When you are taking off your occasion glasses, what sticks with you?

Prien: The query was the way to get out of this tough blockade scenario in Thuringia. On the one hand, there may be the AfD, which has just lately misplaced help however remains to be the strongest occasion within the polls. On the opposite hand, a drained Prime Minister from the left (Bodo Ramelow, d. Red.), who’s unelectable for many individuals from the center of society and comes from a celebration that’s presently dismantling itself. In this example, it was vital to indicate voters that, sure, there’s a bourgeois various. And that's precisely what Mario Voigt achieved.

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Mario Voigt (CDU, left);  Björn Höcke (AfD)

WELT: Should different high candidates of the Union, probably additionally the Prime Minister, face a attainable duel with the respective AfD candidate earlier than state elections?

Prien: Every high candidate has to determine that for themselves. Personally, I might have nice problem placing myself on a stage with such individuals.

WELT: What does the CDU be taught total from this duel for the way to cope with the AfD?

Prien: That it’s proper to cope with the content material of the AfD's positions. That it’s not sufficient to taboo or demonize them. I can solely name on the opposite democratic events to lastly take up this struggle. You can see, particularly in East Germany, that the visitors mild events are fully unsuccessful with their earlier ways and are more and more being marginalized there.

Comment by Ulf Poschardt

World editor-in-chief Dr_ Ulf Poschardt 01

WELT: In the three jap German states the place elections are happening this yr, the AfD and the Alliance Sahra Wagenknecht (BSW) collectively have virtually 50 p.c. If you embrace the left, it's greater than 50 p.c. Forming majorities is prone to be tough throughout the board. What to do?

Prien: We need to constantly present those who we’ve higher gives and that we provide options for the respective federal state. No coalition debates, rely by yourself strengths. Become as robust as attainable your self after which see after the election what is possible given the end result. Furthermore, our determination of incompatibility with the Left nonetheless applies. And you don't work with a nationalistic, fascist, undoubtedly right-wing extremist occasion just like the AfD anyway. Under no circumstances.

WELT: Is Wagenknecht's BSW a possible associate for the CDU?

Prien: I can't give a closing evaluation of that but. I discover the BSW's stance on the Ukraine battle and NATO extremely problematic. They are undoubtedly not companions with regards to these points. In the top, Mario Voigt and the state CDU should choose whether or not this is likely to be completely different in Thuringia's state politics.

BSW nation supervisor in an interview

Chairman of the Thuringian regional association of the BSW, Steffen Schütz

Wagenknecht occasion in Thuringia

WELT: The CDU is presently repositioning itself nationwide. In May it desires to undertake a brand new primary program. What level would you notably emphasize to be able to change into extra engaging to voters within the East?

Prien: A separate Eastern chapter will surely not be the appropriate strategy 35 years after the autumn of the Berlin Wall. In East, West, North and South it is necessary that our nation doesn’t lose its financial connection. It's about securing our prosperity within the transformation, about our freedom, which is threatened, and about inner and exterior safety and about efficient ideas on the migration situation. This is vital for everybody, for the individuals in East Germany equally.

WELT: If you have a look at the matters from the essential program that can be debated within the run-up to the occasion convention – the renaissance of nuclear energy, the main tradition – that sounds rather a lot like West Germany within the 80s, doesn't it?

Prien: I don’t assume so. I feel this can be very well timed that the peaceable use of nuclear energy ought to be reassessed at a time when local weather safety has to play an vital position and excessive power costs are concurrently threatening our prosperity. We aren’t having a retrospective debate about nuclear energy. Germany is now importing power from overseas, together with nuclear power. And we are saying that we should not rapidly quit the choice of utilizing next-generation nuclear energy crops in Germany.

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Solar energy field and wind turbines during a summer sunrise

WELT: The debate a few German dominant tradition is already a bit outdated…

Prien: On the opposite. We are discussing this within the context of social cohesion, one of the crucial vital present socio-political points. We perceive the phrase main tradition to imply a cultural minimal that allows us to reside collectively peacefully and tolerantly in a various society. It's not about exclusion, however about profitable cooperation.

WELT: The management of the Union – Friedrich Merz, Carsten Linnemann, you, let's add Hendrik Wüst and Markus Söder from the CSU – all come from West Germany. Why is that?

Prien: Well, you're forgetting Michael Kretschmer, my deputy colleague. He may even run once more on the occasion convention.

WELT: Saxony's Prime Minister Kretschmer usually stands sideways within the secure. Coincidence?

Prien: This applies to his evaluation of the Ukraine battle, and a individuals's occasion just like the CDU has to endure that. Otherwise, Michael Kretschmer is a extremely valued colleague who at all times displays the attitude of his federal state to us. This is infinitely helpful.

Reiner Haseloff from Magdeburg additionally performs an important position in our consultations, as he has numerous expertise and is an important advisor. Mario Voigt and Yvonne Magwas from Saxony performed a key position in shaping the essential program. In this respect, my notion is basically completely different than yours.

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CDU chairman Friedrich Merz

WELT: Speaking of personnel: Who would be the candidate for chancellor?

Prien: We are within the lucky place that in Friedrich Merz we’ve a robust occasion and parliamentary group chief who’s ideally suited to the workplace. If he desires it, then he’ll.

WELT: Bernhard Vogel – previously Prime Minister of Thuringia, amongst different issues – considers heads of presidency like Daniel Günther and Hendrik Wüst to be the extra appropriate candidates for chancellor. You too?

Prien: With our prime ministers within the states, we even have personalities who completely have what it takes to change into chancellor. But up to now I haven't heard that any of them are operating for workplace.

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WELT: Back to the TV duel for a second. Following this broadcast, it additionally grew to become obvious that politicians are more and more utilizing social media channels to convey their standpoint to the individuals. Does that fear you – particularly because the Minister of Education, who’s at all times vital of the problem?

Prien: At this level I agree with Angela Merkel – politics begins with acknowledging actuality. Social media has change into a necessary area for the battle of political opinion, which is sadly presently getting used rather more professionally by extremist events. In this respect, the democratic events nonetheless have some catching as much as do.

Unfortunately, the significance of print media has declined considerably in recent times. I remorse that extraordinarily. But if individuals more and more have a look at different channels, then we’ve to make use of them too.