Home International News German Parliament Elects Olaf Scholz To Succeed Angela Merkel As New Chancellor

German Parliament Elects Olaf Scholz To Succeed Angela Merkel As New Chancellor


New Delhi: After earning a majority of 395 of 736 delegates’ votes in a parliamentary vote on Wednesday morning, Olaf Scholz will succeed Angela Merkel as Germany’s new chancellor.

Scholz will lead a liberal-left “traffic light” coalition government comprising his Social Democratic Party (SPD), the Greens, and the liberal Free Democratic Party (FDP), the first power-sharing arrangement of its sort in Germany since 1957.

Scholz, 63, who served in Merkel’s coalition as vice-chancellor and finance minister, had a decisive majority of 395 votes in the Bundestag lower house of parliament, according to Bundestag President Baerbel Bas.

When Parliament elected Scholz as the next chancellor, wearing a black face mask, waved as he received a standing ovation from parliamentarians and was presented with flower bouquets and an apple basket from the leaders of the various parliamentary groupings.

Scholz was formally nominated by President Frank-Walter Steinmeier at the neighbouring Bellevue Palace before returning to parliament to take the oath of office in front of parliamentarians, following the democratic procedures outlined in Germany’s Basic Law. 

Amidst dealing with a terrible fourth wave of coronavirus infections and authoritarian administrations threatening its democratic system, Merkel will give over the chancellery to the next leader of a country in the afternoon.

Scholz has positioned himself as Merkel’s logical successor and a safe pair of hands to guide Germany through issues ranging from the climate catastrophe to coping with a more hostile Russia and a more assertive China, thanks to his down-to-earth and no-nonsense demeanour.

Scholz will head an unusual three-way federal ruling coalition with the pro-spending, ecological Greens and the fiscally conservative, libertarian Free Democrats (FDP) – hitherto unthinkable political bedfellows. 

(With inputs from Agencies)

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