Who Is the Real Winner in Germany?
Merkel went silent as the AfD went viral.
For the first time in modern German political history, an unabashedly nationalist party will occupy seats in the Bundestag. In the campaign’s final weeks, the anti-immigrant, anti-EU Alternative for Germany (AfD) skyrocketed from mediocrity, fueled by an audacious media campaign.
Despite being marked the most “boring” election in the world just months ago, turnout was high in Sunday’s elections. Whether out of loyalty or protest, 77 percent of eligible voters cast their ballots. The results delivered a dramatic blow to Chancellor Angela Merkel’s grand coalition, casting a shadow on her legacy and raising further questions about the future of the European Union.
On this week’s first episode of The E.R, Constanze Stelzenmüller and Hans Kundnani join deputy editor of ForeignPolicy.com Cameron Abadi to analyze election results. Merkel may have been re-elected for a fourth term, but can she call it a win? And will the results taint the legacy of the de facto leader of Europe?
Constanze Stelzenmüller, an expert on German, European, and transatlantic foreign and security policy and strategy, is the inaugural Robert Bosch senior fellow in the Center on the United States and Europe at Brookings. Prior to working at Brookings, she was a senior transatlantic fellow with the German Marshall Fund. She previously served as an editor for the political section of the German weekly DIE ZEIT, where she had also served as defense and international security editor and covered human rights issues and humanitarian crises. Follow her on Twitter: @ConStelz.
Hans Kundnani is a senior transatlantic fellow at the German Marshall Fund. He focuses on internal European economic and institutional issues, Europe’s role in the world, and on the link between the internal and external dimensions. Prior to joining GMF, Hans was the research director at the European Council on Foreign Relations.
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