Germany After Merkel

Niko Switek
Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 1:30pm to 2:30pm
Thomson Hall 317

Looking from the US to Germany many observers admire chancellor Angela Merkel as an element of stability in turbulent times. Yet, after the federal election last year, she herself only narrowly succeeded in securing her fourth term as head of government. Even though there is economic growth and historically low unemployment, with the unprecedented high numbers of refugees coming to Germany in 2015 public debate continues to revolve strongly around questions of migration and integration. As a result German politics became more polarized, a new right-wing competitor rose and heavy intra-party strife in Merkel's own
conservative Christian democratic party ensued. Under pressure from weak performances at two provincial elections Merkel decided to step down from party leadership, a position traditionally held together with chancellorship. This talk focuses on the consequences of this change in office. What is her legacy, dominating German politics for such a long time? What will the new leadership mean for the Christian democrats and for the German party system as a whole?

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