NewsArmin Laschet: The Teflon Federal Chancellor candidate, on which...

Armin Laschet: The Teflon Federal Chancellor candidate, on which nothing more rolls off

Almost every scandal has run off Armin Laschet so far. But he did not cut a good figure during the flood disaster. And his résumé is also puzzling.

Aachen – Until last week, Armin Laschet made a relatively good figure as candidate for chancellor of the Christian Democrats and Socialists in the election campaign. Always smile nicely, always grin kindly for the cameras. But when the floods poured over his state of North Rhine-Westphalia last week, Teflon-Armin * was over, on which everything rolls off like a Teflon pan.

Party chairman, Christian Democratic Union of Germany: Armin Laschet
Date and place of birth: February 18, 1961 in Aachen
Size: 1.72 meters
Spouse: Susanne Laschet (married since 1985)
Children: Johannes Laschet, Eva Laschet, Julius Laschet

Suddenly Laschet is no longer the radiant sunny boy. He appears disrespectful, laughing in the background while the Federal President expresses his condolences to the relatives of the victims *. Since then, Laschet has been under more pressure than ever before during this election campaign.

Armin Laschet: The CDU candidate for chancellor is not too specific about his résumé either

His time as Prime Minister is anything but without a scandal – on the contrary. The scandals only occasionally ran off him, like on a Teflon pan. Until now anyway. Olaf Scholz has his Wirecard scandal, and he’s not entirely to blame for Cum-Ex *.

And Annalena Baerbock is not the only one who has taken a buck in her résumé. Even the Prime Minister of North Rhine-Westphalia does not take the information there very carefully.

Armin Laschet, Ministerpräsident von Nordrhein-Westfalen, Bundesvorsitzender der CDU und Kanzlerkandidat, sitzt beim ARD-Sommerinterview auf der Terrasse des Marie-Elisabeth-Lüders-Hauses.


So far, Chancellor candidate Armin Laschet has come through the election campaign well. But that could change soon.

On the one hand, there is an activity that has completely disappeared from Laschet’s résumé. This is an activity that one or the other in this country would bear with broad chest. Between 1999 and 2015, Laschet was a lecturer at one of the best technical universities in the country: RWTH Aachen. Anyone studying here in the mechanical engineering department, for example, can choose their job afterwards from dozens of offers.

Armin Laschet: Cheap posse about his lectureship at RWTH Aachen

But Laschet doesn’t really want to be reminded, because after all, he lost this job through a very inglorious campaign. After losing his students’ exams in the spring of 2015, he simply graded his students from memory. Everything came out and Laschet had to take his hat off at the university in his hometown of Aachen.

For another scandal you have to dig a little deeper with Armin Laschet. You have to go back to 1988. At that time Laschet had just one year under his belt and, as befits a fraternity, Laschet also had the very best contacts at that time. And so he became speechwriter for the then President of the Bundestag Philipp Jennninger *.

Armin Laschet: Was Laschet the author of the spicy Jenninger speech from 1988?

The scandal surrounding Jenninger and his famous speech on the 50th anniversary of the Reichspogromnacht are well known. Even during the speech, a number of parliamentarians angrily left the plenary session in Bonn, Jenninger was then done like anything in the republic. But even this scandal ran off Armin Laschet like the fat in a Teflon pan. He even made a mess with the speech. On January 1, 1989, the paperback “Philipp Jenninger: Speech and Reaction” appeared, author: Armin Laschet among others.

But it goes on. You don’t have to go back that far for other scandals. Crisis management in the flood. The corona outbreak at Tönnies. A scandal-ridden environment ministry. The clearance of the Hambach Forest. An unbureaucratic mask deal with his son’s partner company. The easing campaign of a PR agency. A deleted WDR contribution. Broken election promises and not really good management in the Corona crisis.

Kanzlerkandidat Laschet lacht, während Bundespräsident Steinmeier ein Statement zu der Hochwasser-Katastrophe abgibt


Chancellor candidate Laschet laughs while Federal President Steinmeier makes a statement about the flood disaster

A lot has accumulated over the past few years, which in some companies would have been enough for several layoffs. It is all the more astonishing that all of this has been so much forgotten. The nickname Teflon-Armin – as it was once used by top agents from the USA for Angela Merkel – is quite obvious. But after his inglorious appearance in the wake of the flood disaster, the tide seems to be turning for him. His critics have probably never hit him as much as in the past few days.

Armin Laschet: The dissolution of the “Environmental Crime Unit” is becoming a political issue

For Armin Laschet, the well-being of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia is more of a tactic and calculation. The lobby associations, influential entrepreneurs and party friends are never far when Laschet’s state government gets into the negative headlines. And that since the beginning of his reign in North Rhine-Westphalia in 2017.

On the one hand, there is the dissolution of the “Environmental Crime Unit” by the Environment Minister Christina Schule Föcking (CDU) appointed by Laschet in 2017. The staff unit was actually considered exemplary across Europe. So you could be of the opinion that this is a prestige project, since they were mainly concerned with larger investigations into environmental crime. A more than valued interlocutor in the ranks of the public prosecutor and the police.

It was disbanded on the pretext that the staff unit was only concerned with the illegal killing of birds of prey. In the clarification of cases such as the contamination of the groundwater by Shell near Cologne or the PCB contamination in Dortmund by Envio, the agency should suddenly no longer have played a role. Research by Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR) refutes this. The result: In the investigative committee in the state parliament, the outrageous argumentation could no longer be held.

Scandal in the NRW Ministry of the Environment: files disappear after a state secretary was on site

And to top it all off: The staff unit dealt, among other things, with Minister Schulze Föcking’s fattening operation. And according to media reports, she is also said to have dealt with mercury deals from Laschet’s European Minister Stephan Holthoff-Pförtner (CDU). The pig fattening operation of Laschet’s party friend and member of the Bundestag Johannes Röring was also at the center of the investigation. At that time Röring was still president of the powerful farmers’ association. But as luck would have it in Düsseldorf: The associated file has disappeared without a trace since a State Secretary gained access to the stock of documents in 2018.

Allegedly, all of these incidents have nothing to do with the dissolution of the staff unit. And Laschet also wash his hands in perfect innocence. Just believing in it is difficult. Because, as the news magazine “Der Spiegel” quotes from a statement, “according to the State Chancellery, the Prime Minister was not involved in the decision to dissolve the staff unit”. The state government simply boldly claims that this decision was “made without a vote […]”. And as if that weren’t enough, the Environment Ministry in Düsseldorf claims that no files have been lost.

Armin Laschet: Prime Minister prevents an uncomfortable TV report from being broadcast on WDR

But the inconsistencies at Armin Laschet continue. Laschet is not only a trained radio radio editor – he volunteered at the Munich radio station Radio Charivari in the mid-1980s – during his tenure he also made a name for himself in reporting on his home broadcaster WDR. He had an unpleasant contribution prevented from being broadcast, which would have brought him and his state government uncomfortably into connection with the violent evacuation of the Hambach Forest.

Exclusive recordings that were available to the WDR at the time showed that the statement that the fire protection was decisive for the evacuation of the protest camp was nothing other than drowned out and lies. Laschet had vehemently denied exactly this several times in the plenary session of the state parliament.

Armin Laschet und Herbert Reul unterhalten sich während einer Sitzung des NRW-Landtags auf der Regierungsbank.


A friendship between men: NRW Prime Minister Armin Laschet (right) and State Minister of the Interior Herbert Reul.

In truth, however, North Rhine-Westphalia Interior Minister Herbert Reul (CDU) was fully involved in the talks about the clearance of the forest with RWE from the start and contrary to statements to the contrary. Actually, the group wanted to start clearing immediately after the forest had been cleared. The end of the story is known: The Münster administrative court spat in the soup of the government and RWE, the forest is still standing today.

WDR does not broadcast critical TV reports: Officially, the broadcaster had legal concerns

In the video, a direct involvement of Laschet should be proven. “Yes, I also need an excuse, otherwise you can’t take action. I wanted to clear the forest, I wanted to clear the forest ”, Laschet should be heard. Obviously he admitted his direct participation there, which he later denied in parliament.

To cut a long story short: WDR did not broadcast the finished product – officially with the statement that it had legal and journalistic concerns. The “Spiegel”, however, refuted this statement as baseless. And the Hamburg journalism professor Volker Lilienthal ultimately assumed that the station was far too close to the state government.

The whole crux of the story: Laschet never publicly admitted his involvement and still likes to present himself today as the ultimate Hambach forest rescuer.

The corona crisis can serve as the next example. Almost everyone in the country should still remember the coronavirus outbreak in the Heinsberg district in North Rhine-Westphalia and the study by virologist Hendrick Streeck *. The whole thing was a staged PR coup and the state government did not admit until late that they had known about all of this. Also on board: Ex-“Bild” editor-in-chief Kai Diekmann, who is known to have the very best contacts in the executive suite of the CDU.

Armin Laschet: Farce around Hendrick Streeck’s corona study from the Heinsberg district

The non-representative study was financed by the state of North Rhine-Westphalia and the results were not published in a specialist journal, as is usually the case, but communicated to the public at a press conference in the Düsseldorf State Chancellery. But that’s only one side of the coin. The campaign for the study was paid for by a large furniture chain. And as luck would have it, it was precisely these furniture stores in the course of the first relaxation policy during Corona that were the first to receive customers again. Laschet justified this in a press statement at the time by stating that NRW was “the country of kitchen builders”. The fact that the results of the study were miles off in terms of mortality rate is only of secondary importance.

And then there is the violent corona outbreak at sausage manufacturer Clemens Tönnies in Rheda-Wiedenbrück in 2020 *. While Laschet still claimed at the time that Romanian and Bulgarian workers were on leave at home were responsible for the blatant outbreak, experts said completely different. A church service in a small congregation was ultimately to blame for the outbreak, as journalists found out. Nobody took responsibility for it, certainly not at all political ones.

The result: It was greatly relaxed in North Rhine-Westphalia and thousands of infections including severe courses and deaths occurred.

Armin Laschet and nepotism: Land ordered corona protective equipment through Laschet’s son Johannes

But even that is not enough in Armin Laschet’s long list of scandals. As a fashion influencer, Laschet’s son Johannes brokered a mask deal for NRW with the partner company Van Laack. First, several million protective gowns were ordered there by the state government for 38.5 million euros, and several million face masks were added later. And as if that weren’t enough, the contract was awarded without a proper tender. But here, too, Laschet could not see any mistakes of his own, certainly not nepotism.

Laschet can do one thing and that has already qualified completely different people in this country for the office of Federal Chancellor. He can sit things out, just like his possible predecessor Angela Merkel, who in turn learned this from former Chancellor Helmut Kohl. Even if another CDU member, Armin Laschet, may take over the helm in the Berlin Chancellery in September, not much should change. The signs are on: Keep it up! *,,,, and are offers from IPPEN.MEDIA.

Header list image: © Christophe Gateau / dpa

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