BERLIN (AP) — The Latest on German political machinations (all times local):
Angela Merkel is reportedly telling her conservative party that she is prepared to step down as its leader but remain as German chancellor.
News agency dpa cited unidentified party sources in its report Monday as the leadership of Merkel’s party met following a state election in which both her conservative Christian Democratic Union and its partners in the national government, the center-left Social Democrats, lost significant ground. Mass-circulation daily Bild reported, citing sources in the CDU leadership, that Merkel said she wouldn’t run again for the party leadership.
Merkel’s predecessor, Gerhard Schroeder, stepped down as leader of his party in 2004 but remained chancellor.
Merkel has led the CDU since 2000 and has been Germany’s leader since 2005. The CDU is due to hold a conference in December at which the party’s leadership is up for renewal.
Chancellor Angela Merkel and her coalition partners are mulling the implications of a regional German election in which voters punished the governing parties for months of infighting.
Sunday’s election in the central state of Hesse saw both Merkel’s conservative Christian Democratic Union and the center-left Social Democrats lose significant ground, while there were gains for both the Greens and the far-right Alternative for Germany. Merkel’s CDU finished narrowly salvaged a majority for its regional governing coalition with the Greens.
On Monday, attention was focused on the future of Merkel’s national “grand coalition” of Germany’s traditional biggest parties, and on the chancellor herself. The Social Democrats’ leader, Andrea Nahles, demanded Sunday a “clear, binding timetable” for implementing government projects before the coalition faces an already-agreed midterm review next fall.