CDU party conference advocates a year of society

Am Friday still had the CDU clearing up an issue on which she was lagging behind the other parties. With a narrow majority, the delegates voted for a women’s quota. On Saturday it was the opposite. It was about a project with which the party, at least according to the proponents, should march ahead in an important debate in the future: a compulsory social year for young women and men.

Duties are actually not a campaign hit. But the topic is currently booming, also due to the Russian attack on Ukraine. The majority of Germans seem to have become receptive to such plans. The fact that the mood has changed among people in Germany, similar to that on the subject of nuclear power, was indicated by a survey on Saturday reported by the “Bild” newspaper. According to her, around two-thirds of those surveyed are now in favor of a mandatory year of social service. It should be noted that enthusiasm increases the older the respondents are. Among the youngest respondents between 18 and 29 years old, only about half like the idea.

The CDU party leader Friedrich Merz had become a trendsetter at the beginning of June. He had opened the most recent round when he spoke out in favor of “general compulsory service with the possibility, of course, of also serving in the Bundeswehr”. Since then, notable camps have formed across party lines.

“New worlds of life” through compulsory service

The Federal President, for example, is sympathetic to the idea Frank Walter Steinmeier, whose SPD membership is suspended, and the left Prime Minister Bodo Ramelow. It is unimaginable for her party friends Eva Högl (SPD) and Dietmar Bartsch (Left Party) as well as for Federal Education Minister Bettina Stark-Watzinger (FDP). There is no party in the Bundestag that would be in favor of compulsory service – with the exception of the AfD, which in its basic program wants to turn back the wheel and reintroduce conscription for men, which was suspended in 2011.

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