One of Germany’s big political guns has come out fighting to win back voter confidence in the run up to a crucial regional election on May 9.
Foreign Minister and FDP leader, Guido Westerwelle nailed his colours to the middle class mast. While criticising his conservative coalition partners he reassured “Middle Germany” it was not forgotten.
“Citizens should not have the impression that there is money for everything: there is money for the banks, the car industry, money for the European solidarity, but you should not have the impression there is none left for tax relief. Not with us, ladies and gentlemen, not with us,” said Westerwelle.
If the vote goes the wrong way for the ruling CDU/FDP coalition in North Rhine-Westphalia, it would mark the end of the government’s majority in the upper house of parliament.
State premier and Christian Democrat, Juergen Ruettgers, who is one of those taking a more austere line on tax, could find himself ousted by voters.
If the coalition loses it will spell trouble for Angela Merkel’s legislative agenda, making her reforms vulnerable to obstruction in the Bundestag.