Merz announces Bundestag candidacy

The archconservative, who prior to running to lead the CDU had been out of politics for more than a decade, announced his candidacy in a letter to local party officials. [EPA-EFE/CHRISTIAN MARQUARDT]

Former candidate for CDU chair, Friedrich Merz, confirmed that he will run for a seat in the Bundestag in September’s elections on Tuesday.

The archconservative, who prior to running to lead the CDU had been out of politics for more than a decade, announced his candidacy in a letter to local party officials. 

Merz lost the race for CDU chair to North Rhine-Westphalian leader Armin Laschet, a moderate ally of Chancellor Angela Merkel who ran as a continuity candidate, while Merz advocated for taking the party further to the right. 

While Merz’s Bundestag candidacy could refuel discussions about divisions within the party, his move has also caused a stir within the party, since the seat he is running for is already held by CDU MP Patrick Sensburg. Sensburg has confirmed that he will continue to run for re-election, telling Der Spiegel “I’m standing by my decision: I’ll run again.” 

(Sarah Lawton | EURACTIV.de)

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