More Bavarians see the southern German state’s ruling Christian Social Union as a major problem than they do refugees, according to a new poll.
While 34 percent of Bavarian respondents said the conservative CSU and its regional Minister-President Markus Söder were a problem affecting their region, 28 percent said the same about refugees, according to the survey by Forsa for broadcasters N-tv and RTL.
The poll comes after CSU leader and national Interior Minister Horst Seehofer put pressure on Chancellor Angela Merkel to implement tougher border policies for asylum seekers in a move widely seen as an attempt to secure votes ahead of a regional election in October.
“The CSU strategy to combat their loss of confidence by provoking a conflict with [Merkel’s] CDU over the topic of refugee policies has so far not been successful,” said Forsa boss Manfred Güllner.
“It’s the opposite: The CSU itself has become a problem for Bavaria. And thus in contrast to all other regions, refugees only became a ‘problem’ in Bavaria because the ruling party has been preaching about it so loudly.”
Forsa’s survey also showed the CSU with 37 percent support in Bavaria — 10.7 percentage points lower than the party won in the 2013 regional election.