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US News Paul Ziemiak: CDU general secretary fears image damage - survey proves him right

07:50  11 march  2021
07:50  11 march  2021 Source:   spiegel.de

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The scandal over commissions for corona masks shakes the Union: CDU general secretary Paul Ziemiak expects his party's image to be lost. Survey figures are now available.

  Paul Ziemiak: CDU-Generalsekretär befürchtet Imageschaden – Umfrage gibt ihm Recht © POOL / REUTERS

In the mask affair , the Union tries to limit the damage. Yesterday, the leadership of the CDU / CSU parliamentary group gave all members of the Union until Friday evening to comment on possible financial benefits in connection with pandemic-related transactions. But that changes little in the current PR disaster. And so CDU General Secretary Paul Ziemiak then also fears major damage to the image of his party.

"The events have shaken our party, our members are just as angry as Armin Laschet and I," said Ziemiak of the "Rheinische Post". It is about the misconduct of individuals.

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Members of the Bundestag Georg Nüßlein (CSU) and Nikolas Löbel (CDU) are said to have earned six-figure commissions each for brokering activities in protective mask shops.

Ziemiak said that he refused to "take the many committed and sincere people into kinship" and emphasized that hundreds of thousands of people volunteered in the CDU and that there were thousands of elected officials.

"These individual cases affect us all, make us angry and shame us," said the Secretary General. The CDU politician did not want to draw a comparison with the party donation affair: »The party donation affair in the 1990s was a completely different issue and at that time it was not about individual cases. Nevertheless, the image damage is great these days. «

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survey shows loss of trust among voters

With this assessment and Ziemiak is probably right, as a recent survey shows. Due to the mask affair, the Union is losing trust among the population. That is the result of the survey by the online opinion research institute Civey on behalf of the newspapers of the "Funke Mediengruppe" reported by the Reuters news agency.

Accordingly, only around a third of those questioned trust the Union as much as they did before the corruption allegations. Around 60 percent, on the other hand, state that the mask affair had a negative impact on their trust in the CDU and CSU. A good 75 percent of those surveyed expect that the parties will therefore be very likely to be damaged in the federal election.

Nüßlein and Löbel have since left their respective parties. Löbel resigned from the Bundestag with immediate effect. Nüßlein no longer wants to run for Bundestag in autumn. The incidents had caused outrage nationwide.

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Investigations against another person started

While CDU general secretary Ziemiak does not want to draw the comparison to the donation affair of 1999/2000, parliamentary group vice Gitta Connemann takes exactly this step. “We are in the worst crisis since the donation affair. Only if we react with all consistency and severity will we be able to regain trust, ” said last to the“ Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung ”.

Yesterday it became known that the investigation into the Nüßlein case would be expanded . According to SPIEGEL information, the Munich Public Prosecutor's Office is now investigating a third suspect. Investigators said he was accused of "bribing elected officials" in accordance with Section 108e of the Criminal Code. It was initially unclear who the third suspect is - it is said to be another businessman.

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This is interesting!