It appears as though Germany’s conservative Christian Democratic Union (Christlich-Demokratische Union; CDU) is set to squeak out a victory against Chancellor Gerhardt Schröder’s Party—the liberal Social Democrat Party of Germany (Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands; SPD) in today’s Bundestag election. A win for the CDU would make its leader--Angela Merkel--the first-ever female Chancellor of Germany.
David at Medienkritik has all of the details. As is usual with the politics of any democratic country—particularly parliamentary ones--those details are complicated. I did hear on the news this morning, however, that Frau Merkel wants to improve her country’s relations with the United States. But if her party’s majority is small, she will have a tough time achieving her goals. Go read David’s analysis to find out why this may be so.
UPDATE: It's a quagmire.
An exit poll by the Forsa agency showed Schroeder's party winning more seats in parliament even though Merkel's Christian Democrats received more votes overall.Shades of the USA circa 2000, but far less volatile, most likely. Most Germans know how their form of government works.
''I feel myself confirmed in ensuring on behalf of our country that there is in the next four years a stable government under my leadership,'' he said to cheering supporters at his Social Democrat party headquarters while flashing the thumbs-up signal and holding his arms aloft in a gesture of triumph.
But Merkel claimed her party received a mandate from voters to form a new coalition government to carry out her plan to mend frayed ties with the United States.
''What is important now is to form a stable government for the people in Germany, and we ... quite clearly have the mandate to do that,'' she said.