• Germany's news in English

Sarrazin wins support for integration comments

DDP/The Local · 11 Oct 2009, 11:24

Published: 11 Oct 2009 11:24 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Sarrazin, Berlin's former finance minister, said in a recent interview with the Lettre International magazine that "a great many Arabs and Turks in this city, whose numbers have grown because of the wrong policies, have no productive function other than as fruit and vegetable sellers."

The remarks raised the strong possibility that Sarrazin might have to resign his position on the Bundesbank board after the bank’s president, Axel Weber, said the comments had caused “damage to the institution's reputation.”

But a survey by pollster Emnid for Bild am Sonntag found that 51 percent of Germans agreed with Sarrazin while just 39 percent disagreed.

Only voters who supported the Green party clearly rejected Sarrazin’s comments, with 64 percent disagreeing and 24 percent agreeing.

Otherwise, support for the disparaging remarks spanned the political spectrum. Sarrazin got his strongest support from conservative Christian Democratic (CDU) voters, 59 percent of whom agreed with him. This was followed by 55 percent of voters from the socialist Left party voters, 54 percent of pro-business Free Democrats supporters and 50 percent of centre-left Social Democrats (SPD) fans.

Sarrazin also won support from the 501 people surveyed for kicking off a debate on the subject of integration, with 69 percent saying such a debate was useful and just 22 percent believing he would have been better off “keeping his mouth shut.”

Story continues below…

In the now-notorious interview, Sarrazin also said that Berliners had neither the intellect nor the talent to make Germany’s capital a great city and that the city was hampered by the fact that “40 percent of all births take place in the lower class.”

DDP/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Munich to get 'nice toilets' to serve cross-legged locals
Photo: DPA

The Bavarian capital has a pee problem - the city only has one public toilet for every 13,000 inhabitants. But a new plan could rescue desperate locals, the Süddeutsche Zeitung reports.

German kids get glowing report for their English skills
Photo: DPA.

As if multilingual Germans don't already put many English-speakers to shame, now the younger generation is improving their English skills even more.

Berlin museum controversially recreates Hitler bunker
The reconstruction of the Hitler bunker. Photo: DPA

Sensationalized or compelling history? Berlin museums clash over new Nazi bunker exhibit

Germans think they're fit, but they're really couch potatoes
Photo: DPA.

There's been an increase in the number of Germans who define themselves as "fit", but their lifestyle choices don't quite match this self-perception.

10 fascinating facts you never knew about German beer
Tennis coach Boris Becker and his wife Lilly at Oktoberfest 2016 in Munich. Photo: DPA

From malt and monks to Radlers and rivalries, the story of German beer is as rich and wonderful as its selection.

Intensive farming 'endangers a third of German species'
Photo: DPA

There are 32,000 species of animal, plant and mushroom life native to Germany. Due to intensive farming methods, one in every three of these is endangered, a new report shows.

German hospital uses therapy to 'treat' paedophiles
A poster from the campaigne "Don't offend", which offers therapy to paedophiles. The sign reads "Do you love kids more than you'd prefer? There's help." Photo: DB Scholz & Friends / DPA.

A unique German initiative is offering therapy to paedophiles to control their urges, with the aim of getting them help before they offend.

Minister: 'no tolerance' for clowns after chainsaw attack
Photo: DPA

Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière has called for a zero-tolerance approach to 'killer clowns' after a series of attacks culminating in two teenagers being chased by a clown wielding a chainsaw.

Baby who was auctioned on eBay taken away from father
Photo: DPA.

A German court ruled on Thursday that a man who put his one-month-old baby up for sale on the online auction platform eBay should only be allowed contact with the child under supervision.

Portugal's ruling party calls German minister 'pyromaniac'
Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble. Photo: DPA.

The head of Portugal's ruling Socialists called German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble a "pyromaniac" on Thursday after he criticized Lisbon for reversing course on austerity.

10 German clichés that foreigners get very wrong
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
10 ways German completely messes up your English
Germany's 10 most weird and wonderful landmarks
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd