Every German politician I have spoken to this week watches the chaos in David Cameron’s government over Europe with something close to horror. This is a very dangerous game, says one. It’s like the US Republicans with the Tea Party, says another. There will be a terrible awakening, says a third. The three, all members of the Bundestag, will be opponents in September’s German general election, but they see the Conservative implosion over Europe through the same lens.
“The current situation in the UK is not positive at all,” Michael Fuchs of the CDU – Chancellor Angela Merkel’s centre right party – told me this week. “You have a very large deficit. Your industry is almost nothing. Your economy is too dependent on the City of London. You need to realise it won’t get better if you leave Europe. It will get worse.”