Published: Wed, March 14, 2018
Global | By Marsha Munoz

Angela Merkel elected German Chancellor for fourth term

Angela Merkel elected German Chancellor for fourth term

Although Angela Merkel is about to embark on her fourth term as German Chancellor, her authority has been undermined by her having to enter a coalition with the Social Democratic Party.

Merkel needs the support of a majority of all lawmakers to be re-elected on Wednesday, meaning that she has to win at least 355 votes. The coalition enjoys only a small majority in the German Bundestag and has come under fire from both sides of the political spectrum.

Merkel's victory marks the final stepping stone on the path to Germany's new government - a renewal of the so-called grand coalition ("GroKo") between the Chancellor's CDU/CSU alliance and the SPD.

More news: Soccer Saturday pundits' Man Utd v Liverpool predictions and key men

While the outcome preserves the political center, Merkel is likely to be challenged more often in a parliament that includes the far-right Alternative for Germany for the first time.

To quieten the dissent, Merkel has named a sometimes outspoken critic, Jens Spahn, 37, as her new health minister and recently tapped a potential successor, new CDU general secretary Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer. That significantly complicated the task of forming another governing coalition.

Merkel's new vice chancellor, centre-left Social Democrat Scholz takes over the purse strings held for eight years by steely conservative Wolfgang Schaeuble.

More news: Trump Expected to Fire Another Cabinet Secretary

As reported in media, in the secret ballot 364 of the Bundestag's 709 members voted in favor of Merkel - nine more than the 50 percent required.

German chancellor Angela Merkel receives her certificate of appointment from President Frank-Walter Steinmeier after being re-elected as chancellor, during a ceremony at Bellevue Palace in Berlin, Germany, March 14, 2018.

In this term, Merkel will have to grapple with a possible Europe-U.S. trade war, find common ground with France and others on shaping the European Union's future, and manage a potentially fragile coalition at home.

More news: Next 'Fantastic Beasts' movie thrills fans with return to Hogwarts

The AfD scored nearly 13% in the election, capitalising on public fears over a mass influx of more than one million refugees and migrants since 2015 and angrily demanding that "Merkel must go".

Like this: