German Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel made headlines this week when he compared the country’s rising AfD party to that of the Nazi party during an interview with the Funke Mediengruppe.
Gabriel claims that the AfD party, which has only been in existence since 2014, holds views that aligned too close to comfort to the views of his own father who he stated was a committed Nazi until his death.
“Everything that they are saying, I’ve already heard – just to be clear – from my own father, who was a Nazi to his last breath,” Gabriel told the news outlet.
“They want to go back to the repressed old West German republic of the 1960s”
“They want to go back to the repressed old West German republic of the 1960s, when woman were still at home and foreigners, gays and lesbians had to be invisible.”
The AfD, which has been playing off the public concern over the open door policy Germany has had with the mostly Muslim refugees, has positioned themselves as an anti-imigration party.
In May, members backed a pledge during a party conference that declared Islam as not being compatible with the the German constitution, calling for a ban on burkas and mosques.
Many of Germany’s more established political parties have already expressed concerns over the AfD’s rise in popularity, which during the last regional elections, took seats in eight of the eighteen state assemblies.
Current national opinion polls show the party’s support at 15 percent, and that number is continuing to rise, leaving no doubt that AfD candidates will become serious contenders in next year’s federal elections.