The colourful posters on Hamburg’s streets tell the story of Germany’s 2009 election. “We’re electing the chancellor” says the slogan of the Christian Democrats, next to a reassuringly maternal image of Angela Merkel.
It is at once an idiotically simple but cleverly conceived slogan. Because Merkel is the incumbent, it communicates the subliminal message to voters that her rivals, and the rivals to the CDU, are smaller in stature. In particular, it diminishes the Social Democrats, the CDU’s coalition partner. All the polls show that voters think Merkel makes a better chancellor than Frank-Walter Steinmeier, her SPD foreign minister and challenger, ever would. Merkel is the CDU’s trump card. Read more