On Merkel’s birthday: Habeck praises her “normality in perfection”

On Merkel’s birthday: Habeck praises her “normality in perfection”
On Merkel’s birthday: Habeck praises her “normality in perfection”

Recognition for political opponents is rare in Berlin. Robert Habeck made an exception and gave Angela Merkel many words of praise on her upcoming birthday.

For 16 years, Angela Merkel shaped Germany as Chancellor – now she is turning 70. On the occasion of her milestone birthday on July 17, Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck paid tribute to her political opponent.

Merkel stood for stability as head of government, Habeck wrote in a guest article for the magazine “Rolling Stone”. She kept her own party “in the middle” for more than 16 years and made it immune to the temptation of right-wing populism. “That’s something that cannot be said for the time after her,” the economics minister said, taking a dig at the current Union leadership.

Habeck appreciates Merkel’s humour

Habeck described Merkel’s confident dealings with male party leaders of the Union as a “victory over chauvinism”. She said she had rarely used her own biography as an East German woman for political purposes.

Personally, the CDU politician embodied “normality in perfection,” explained Habeck. “You could imagine Merkel baking a cake or peeling potatoes or watching ‘Tatort’.” People knew that even as head of government, she went to the supermarket, the cinema and the theatre. Habeck also praised the ex-chancellor’s funny side: “The subtle mockery (…) was as much at home with her as the cutting wit and humour – the pathos, the emotion and the passion less so,” wrote the Minister of Economic Affairs.

Former German Chancellor Angela Merkel sits in a kindergarten

Farewell to Merkel: Funny scenes from 16 years of chancellorship


However, out of concern about asking too much of the voters, necessary changes were left behind during Merkel’s time in government from 2005 to 2021, Habeck noted. “Needless to say, this also explains why the traffic light coalition is so unpopular.” Of course, there are some management or performance problems in the traffic light coalition, admitted the Green politician. “But perhaps approval comes under structural pressure after a long period of inactivity when a government is a reform government.”

Source: Stern

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