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Sigmar Gabriel: Former SPD leader aims to halt AfD at all costs – now campaigns for CDU

In a conversation with the “Westdeutschen Rundfunkt” (WDR), former vice chancellor and ex-SPD leader Sigmar Gabriel has expressed surprising emotion about the current political situation. Gabriel said he was “almost desperate” in the face of the astronomical popularity of the AfD.

If the AfD were to win the state election in Saxony this year, national chaos would loom. “That would really shake up the republic,” said Gabriel. “To be honest, I am appalled that despite this obvious development, no one is doing anything.”

Gabriel: “Just imagine, Höcke becomes state president!”

Even in 1980, when Franz Josef Strauß reached for the Chancellery, committees were immediately formed nationwide “to defend the republic”. However, Höcke poses a much greater danger to the country.

“Just imagine, Höcke becomes state president!” Gabriel told the ” WDR“. He personally could not comprehend why the traditional parties did not unite to prevent the continued strengthening of the AfD in their common interest.

In the common interest, for the entire people, there is a need for someone who finally “slams the table” and says, “People, we now have a common task: We must prevent the AfD from reaching this level!”

To weaken the AfD, Gabriel would even campaign for the CDU

For this high goal, he is personally willing to “skip the small-scale partisan politics”. For instance, the traditional parties could support their colleague Michael Kretschmer (CDU, Minister President of Saxony, Ed. note) by providing him with opportunities in Berlin to profile himself nationally.

“[Kretschmer] has guts,” Gabriel said. “He goes into the street-level campaign, into direct confrontation with the AfD, doesn’t get driven away or intimidated. We need such types now! But nothing is happening.”

Saxony SPD not enthused about Gabriel’s proposal

According to a Civey survey from January 2, 2024, the AfD is currently at 37 percent in Saxony. The second-strongest force is the CDU with 30 percent of voter approval. The SPD ranks at 3 percent approval, trailing behind the Greens (8 percent) and the Left (7 percent). Only the FDP is less popular with 1 percent of the polled votes.

As reported by “Bild”, the chief of the already struggling SPD state association in Saxony was not particularly enthusiastic about Gabriel’s appeals. They stated that Gabriel seemed to have missed “some things” that had happened since his retirement. They would invite him to Saxony on an occasion.

In the Saxony state election, the SPD is running with its own leading candidate, Petra Köpping.

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