Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Send Up the White Smoke…Chancellor Angie is on her way

For a while people might have thought Germany was picking a new pope. Journalists have been staked out for the last 3 weeks waiting for any sign about who Germany’s next chancellor would be. News reports showed Merkel and Schroeder in meetings late into the night. There were “grand coalition” meetings, “Jamaica” coalition meetings, “street light” coalition meetings and “8-eye meetings” (between the 4 principal players.)

Finally, yesterday afternoon it became official: Germany has a new chancellor! Angela Merkel, the chemist, daughter of a pastor, who grew up in East Germany, will become Germany’s first female and 8th post-war chancellor. In the understatement of the day, when asked by a reporter how she was feeling, Merkel replied almost confused by the question, “Mir geht’s gut” (I’m doing well.) Ya think!

Her comment was probably and acknowledgement of the fact that she will not have an easy road to travel. Merkel will be governing over a “grand coalition” between the liberals and the conservatives. Liberals will fill 8 cabinet positions. German unemployment averages around 12%. The future of the EU has yet to be decided. The immigration of Muslims to Germany is an issue that has yet to really be addressed. And relations with the US still need to be repaired.

But last night Angie could celebrate! Her party stood behind her, and she won!

Fr. Merkel, as Germany’s new image campaign says, “Du bist Deutschland” (you are Germany!)

P.S. Merkel's accession has caused one more issue: is my fellowship now the Bundeskanzlerin Stipendium??


At 4:10 PM, Anonymous Tanya said...

Merkel may have few words to describe how she felt, but the pictures of her smiling and laughing tell it all. Compared to election night 3 weeks ago, she looks like a different person!

At 5:18 PM, Anonymous DK said...

Angie! Angie! Angie!

Another victory for conservatives worldwide -- Bush, Sharon, Burlesconi, and now Merkel.

Now I gotta get back to worrying about this election...


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