23:38 GMT +313 November 2018
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    German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Chairwoman of the Christian Democratic Union, CDU, is flanked by Martin Schulz, right, chairman of the Social Democratic Party, SPD, and Bavarian Governor Horst Seehofer, chairman of the Christian Social Union, CSU

    Germany’s CDU May Return to Conservativism After Merkel's Exit – SPD Lawmaker

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    German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s decision to not seek re-election in 2021 may result in her ruling Christian Democratic Party (CDU) regaining its traditional conservative positions, notably lost over the management of the 2015 migration crisis, Fritz Felgentreu, a member of the German parliament from the Social Democratic Party, told Sputnik.

    Merkel announced on Monday she would not run for party leader in December or seek a fifth term as chancellor in 2021, setting a deadline for her exit from German politics. It came after the CDU suffered a setback in a state vote in Hesse last Sunday, while its Bavarian sister party suffered its biggest loss in half a century in the southern state.

    READ MORE: Merkel Says Her Step-Down as CDU Leader Unlikely to Affect International Talks

    "I think it means that the Conservatives in Germany will revert to more traditional positions than in the past decade. Under Merkel’s leadership, the CDU has all but lost its conservative profile. This political path is coming to an end," the lawmaker replied after he was asked about the impact Merkel’s decision would have on Germany’s political landscape.

    The lawmaker pointed out that Merkel’s decision was spurred by her inability to restore her authority within the CDU, adding that the German chancellor made the "right conclusion" from her failures.

    "It seems that Merkel has realized that, after 13 years of chancellorship, her political capital has finally been consumed, most profoundly by the government's temporary loss of control during the refugee crisis of 2015. Unable to rebuild her authority, she has drawn the right conclusion," Felgentreu said.

    Merkel has been criticized for her open-door migration policy, which resulted in a million of mostly North African migrants pouring into Germany in 2015. Her party’s popularity slumped in the following years, causing it to lose seats in the federal parliament in 2017.

    The views and opinions expressed by the contributors do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

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