Germany’s opposition Social Democrats have nominated Peer Steinbrueck to take on Angela Merkel for the chancellorship in next September’s election.
In what some see as an uphill struggle against the popular Merkel, the former finance minister has vowed to return to traditional values.
“There is a longing in our society, there is a longing, which given the state of financial excesses and the devaluation of the labour force, is looking for more fairness and a refusal of ruthless egoism. Germany needs more ‘we’ and less ‘I’,” Peer Steinbrueck told SPD delegates.
Steinbrueck wants higher taxes on the rich and a minimum wage which Merkel’s Christian Democrats oppose.
One delegate appeared impressed by the new candidate’s message:
“I’m very surprised with this speech; it was very left wing. He did say some important things about equality, but now he has to show he means it.”
With Angela Merkel currently riding high in opinion polls the SPD hope their candidate can try and win over Germany’s middle of the road voters.