Far-Right Popularity Soars in Germany, Sparking Concerns for Authorities

Far-Right Popularity Soars in Germany, Sparking Concerns for Authorities

Shafaq News/ German media unveiled a worrisome surge in the popularity of far-right groups, causing alarm among German authorities.

Two opinion polls published at the end of the week indicated a substantial lead for the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, positioning it as a significant competitor to the ruling Social Democrats, led by Olaf Scholz, who now find themselves in a precarious position.

While the far-right in Germany had previously focused on issues related to refugees and Islam, they have now shifted their attention to the government's climate policies. This move has enabled them to reach unprecedented popularity in the post-World War II era.

According to the first opinion poll conducted for the ARD Organization, the Alternative for Germany party has secured 18% of the vote. In comparison, the second poll published by the Bild newspaper reports an even more shocking result of 19%. This surge in popularity is a significant milestone for the AfD, as it marks a doubling of their support since the 2021 elections, where they garnered just over 10% of the vote.

In contrast, the Greens, part of the ruling coalition led by Chancellor Olaf Scholz, have experienced a substantial decline, with projected support between 13% and 14%.

Meanwhile, the conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and Social Democratic Union (SPD), which moved into opposition following the departure of former Chancellor Angela Merkel from political life, currently maintain a lead with voter intentions ranging between 27% and 28%. However, their support has stagnated, and they face difficulties presenting themselves as a viable alternative.

Notably, the AfD benefits from the declining popularity of the ruling coalition, as dissatisfaction with their performance has reached 20% among Germans due to inflation, deflation, and concerns arising from the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine, as revealed by the "ARD" network investigation. Although the conservatives currently lead in the polls, they struggle to embody a credible alternative.

Norbert Röttgen, a prominent figure within the Christian Democratic Union, remarked, "The party needs introspection and must question why we are not effectively capitalizing on such strong dissatisfaction with the government." He described the opinion poll indicating 18% support for the AfD as a "disaster."

While immigration remains a prominent concern for two-thirds of voters, the far-right party seems to benefit from its increasingly vocal opposition to climate change policies. Party deputy leader Beatrix von Storch stated, "We do not support climate policies because the climate has always naturally changed over time."

The AfD has seized upon the Greens' proposal to ban fossil fuel heating from next year, a proposition that faces opposition even within the ruling coalition from the Liberal party.

Tino Chrupalla, the co-chair of the AfD, has redirected his criticism towards the Greens, emphasizing that they are the "only" party that categorically refuses to form a coalition with them.

In an interview with Funke Group newspaper, Chrupalla stated, "Citizens can see where the Greens' policies are leading: economic warfare, inflation, and the decline of the industrial sector."

The AfD has singled out Vice Chancellor and Minister of Economics Robert Habeck as a scapegoat for the country's challenges.

Political expert Hayo Funk summarized the situation: "The AfD has been successful in capitalizing on the ruling coalition's communication weaknesses and concerns related to heating costs."

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