Oslo will, one assumes, have to wait a while for any celebration — or perhaps even deep reflection — as the fact that Olaf Scholz is Germany’s likely next prime minister. Scholz was selected by his fellow Social Democrats and, following a shaky vote in which the minority coalition agreed to support him, now faces an additional hurdle: five weeks of difficult coalition talks with three other parties — the Christian Democrats (CDU), the Christian Social Union (CSU), and the Free Democrats (FDP) — that the CDU/CSU is expected to win easily, based on all major polls. But amid all that, the speculation will continue on who Scholz will select as his finance minister, the government’s most important economic post. [Editor’s note: The headline has been corrected since its original publication.]
Scholz, a 48-year-old career politician, has held a number of positions over his nearly two decades in parliament, the most prominent being deputy finance minister under the previous Merkel government. A former bricklayer and who rose through the CDU ranks as a local lawmaker in Bavaria, Scholz is widely popular and regarded as a serious and smart, but out-of-the-box thinker. On Thursday, Scholz tweeted: “It will be about power as well as dignity.”
But the nascent Scholz era may be short-lived. Following his election, Scholz said that his predecessor, Horst Seehofer, could now become the next leader of the CSU.
Read the full story at The Washington Post.
Germany appears set to elect a Social Democrat as prime minister for the first time in more than two decades