BERLIN (Reuters) – German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Tuesday the possibility that Social Democrat Olaf Scholz could try to form a coalition with the far-left Linke party after a Sept. 26 national election was one “huge difference” between them.
Scholz has consciously aped Merkel’s style during campaigning and a snap poll showed he beat other candidates in a televised debate on Sunday. However, when pressed during the debate, he did not rule out a coalition with the Linke.
“With me as chancellor there would never be a coalition in which the Linke is involved, and whether this (stance) is shared by Olaf Scholz or not remains open,” Merkel told a joint news conference with Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz.
“In this context, there is simply a huge difference for the future of Germany between me and him,” she added.
(Reporting by Paul Carrel, editing by Thomas Escritt)