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"Angela Merkel, Chancellor must remain"

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HB BERLIN. In the first interview after his illness, said Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble: "The vast majority of CDU and CSU in my opinion, that Angela Merkel, Chancellor must remain you share it well." Schäuble told the Bild am Sonntag newspaper. He also played down the debate for a chancellor suitability of Defence Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg. That Guttenberg is the better choice, "just believe the media". In truth, the defense minister was suffering from the debate.

CSU chief Horst Seehofer also played in the "Welt am Sonntag", the role Guttenberg down deliberately, which is Germany’s most popular politician, according to surveys. "We have a dozen first-class younger people. Guttenberg is one of them," said Bavaria’s prime minister. In the CSU, which holds its convention this weekend, Guttenberg is a competitor Seehofer.

Schäuble, meanwhile, returns after three-week hospital stay back in office. On Monday he wanted to record officially his work in the Ministry of Finance again. On the morning is the session to the CDU-Bureau. "It’s nice to be back there," Schäuble said in the interview.

The paraplegic politicians had gone for a hard to heal scar in medical treatment and was originally four weeks remain in the hospital. "I had a slow-healing wound in the sitting area that had to be treated surgically. After that I could not burden this area for three weeks," he said. "Now I’m a few days early again – the better." He was getting good again. He would, however, take things slowly. "I can not give 150 percent immediately. I have to do something small at first slowly."

Schäuble defended in the Bild am Sonntag "also the Franco-German compromise on EU stability pact. He saw no alternative to this agreement. "There was never a realistic chance of automatic sanctions against deficit sinners." Critics of the FDP, which include Vice-Chancellor and ‘Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, and the Union responded that the Finance Minister: "Germany has not fallen over."

Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) had agreed with French President Nicolas Sarkozy on Germany to drop its demand for automatic penalties for deficit sinners. France supports this long-term anti-crisis mechanism.

Germany would have achieved that there is more stability than before and more than many thought was achievable, said Schäuble. He was involved in the preparation of the talks between Chancellor Merkel and Sarkozy, the parallel discussions in the Task Force of EU finance ministers have been heavily involved. According to Schäuble, the reform of the Stability Pact ensures that there will not be a second case of Greece: "We have drawn the right lessons from the case of Greece."

Of course, Germany had not implemented his ideas to 100 percent, said Schäuble. "But who believes that went for 27 member countries, lacking the understanding of Europe."

The Chancellor gets for the German-French plans for reform of the Euro stability pact also headwinds from its own ranks. "There is no hard with soft penalties €" said the president of the CDU’s economic council, Kurt Lauk. "The EU is failing to historically well on its way to the urgent need for scarfing the Stability Pact." Under the influence of the Greek crisis, the EU states to consistent and credible penalties would have known. "But after the recent announcement of the compromise threatens stability hammer to harmless cotton swab to be."

The head of the Economic Council complained that penalties should be imposed in the future only if it qualified majority in the EU Council is concluded. "These homeopathic measures are too weak to Europe to bring back stability to the path," said Lauk. "Alone against the deficit criterion was violated more than 40 times without ever sanctions have been imposed. Penalties may not be longer a bargaining chip in the EU Council."

Lauk agreed with Merkel acknowledged that the EU treaties should be amended to establish an effective anti-crisis mechanism in Europe. He fears, however, lengthy negotiations. "This process may take too long for the euro."