Chancellor Angela Merkel is picking up a tailwind for Germany’s election in September, strengthening her position at home and on the global stage ahead of a series of summits with fellow leaders including President Donald Trump.
Written off last year for her open-border stance on refugees, Merkel is clawing back when it counts. Her party’s election victory in Germany’s most populous state on Sunday highlights her pull among voters as Merkel stands up for free trade, vows to hold the European Union together and fends off Trump’s attacks in a conflict over defense spending. Merkel plans to hold a news conference Monday at about 1 p.m. in Berlin, before hosting French President Emmanuel Macron for their first meeting after his inauguration.
“Almost everybody in Europe expects that Merkel will stay in power” now, Famke Krumbmueller, a partner at political-risk consultancy OpenCitiz, said by phone. For European peers such as Macron, that means “he can be pretty sure now that he will have to deal with Angela Merkel in the next four years.”