Friedrich Merz is not a fan of the women’s quota. The CDU boss always emphasized that it was only the “second best” solution to solving the CDU’s women’s problem: too few female members at the base, too few women in management positions. However, Merz never said what the “first best solution” would be.

Now the CDU leader may still have to commit to the women’s quota. The schedule is set: The CDU wants to deal with the topic at its party conference in September in Hanover. This Wednesday, the party committees of the CDU will finally discuss the applications for the party conference.

Merz thinks little of first asking members about the women’s quota, as some in the party have already called for. The CDU leader will recommend that the committees make the decision at the party conference this Wednesday. This was confirmed by party circles in the Tagesspiegel.

The CDU has been struggling for a women’s quota for a long time. In 2020, the party’s federal executive board backed a proposal from the statutes commission. Among other things, the concept envisages that by 2025 party executive committees from the district level must be made up of half men and half women.

Actually, a party conference should have voted on the women’s quota long ago. However, this requires a change in the statutes – and that is only possible with a face-to-face party conference. The last party conferences took place digitally due to the corona. Now it should finally be ready in September. But whether the proposal really goes through like that is still open. There is resistance in parts of the party. For example, the Junge Union and the Mittelstands- und Wirtschaftsunion (MIT) – the business wing of the CDU – are skeptical. MIT would like a membership survey because it believes grassroots support for the quota is low.

The women in the party, on the other hand, are putting pressure on them. “A balanced compromise is on the table and is ready for a decision at the party conference in Hanover,” said the chairwoman of the Women’s Union, Annette Widmann-Mauz, in an interview at the weekend.

In the end, a lot will depend on how Merz positions itself. So far he has not found a better solution than the quota for women. If he now campaigns convincingly for the project, that could have a positive effect on the mood. If he only does it half-heartedly, it will be close. In any case, his Secretary General Mario Czaja is promoting it. “I want us to send out a strong signal that women are not only welcome in the CDU, but are also needed,” he told the Tagesspiegel.